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Regional Boards => Southeast => Topic started by: wdcrft63 on March 27, 2018, 06:05:36 PM

Title: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on March 27, 2018, 06:05:36 PM
The project to extend NC 540 across southern Wake County to its connection with I-40/Future I-42 is about to get underway; I think it deserves a separate thread.

NCDOT will advertise three design-build contracts, and the first one should go out for proposals next month. The estimated total cost of the three projects is about $1 billion. This is a toll road project to be operated by the NC Turnpike Authority when it is complete.

On April 12 NCDOT is holding a "optional industry event to discuss the projects and the upcoming procurements." There's a news release on this event here:
https://apps.ncdot.gov/newsreleases/details.aspx?r=15003
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Strider on April 03, 2018, 10:39:32 AM
The project to extend NC 540 across southern Wake County to its connection with I-40/Future I-42 is about to get underway; I think it deserves a separate thread.

NCDOT will advertise three design-build contracts, and the first one should go out for proposals next month. The estimated total cost of the three projects is about $1 billion. This is a toll road project to be operated by the NC Turnpike Authority when it is complete.

On April 12 NCDOT is holding a "optional industry event to discuss the projects and the upcoming procurements." There's a news release on this event here:
https://apps.ncdot.gov/newsreleases/details.aspx?r=15003


I hope they leave I-540 section alone after the loop is finished. That road doesn't need to be tolled. (see C-470/E-470/NW Parkway in Denver as the only portion of their beltway that isn't tolled is the C-470 one.)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on April 03, 2018, 10:48:01 AM
I hope they leave I-540 section alone after the loop is finished. That road doesn't need to be tolled. (see C-470/E-470/NW Parkway in Denver as the only portion of their beltway that isn't tolled is the C-470 one.)

IIRC, NCDOT cannot legally toll I-540 as it is now, but they can build new toll lanes if they wanted to, like theyíre currently doing on I-77 near Charlotte.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: froggie on April 03, 2018, 01:10:34 PM
^ Technically, NCDOT could apply tolls to I-540 at the Neuse River Bridge, with the caveat that any toll revenue could only be used to maintain/improve that segment of I-540 (US 401 to Buffaloe Rd, include the river bridge).  This is because current Federal law allows jurisdictions to apply tolls to Interstate bridges and tunnels as long as the revenue is only used to maintain/improve that bridge or tunnel location and immediately adjacent segments of the Interstate in question.  This is how VDOT was able to reinstate tolls on the I-264 Downtown Tunnel between Portsmouth and Norfolk, VA.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Strider on April 03, 2018, 01:34:54 PM
^ Technically, NCDOT could apply tolls to I-540 at the Neuse River Bridge, with the caveat that any toll revenue could only be used to maintain/improve that segment of I-540 (US 401 to Buffaloe Rd, include the river bridge).  This is because current Federal law allows jurisdictions to apply tolls to Interstate bridges and tunnels as long as the revenue is only used to maintain/improve that bridge or tunnel location and immediately adjacent segments of the Interstate in question.  This is how VDOT was able to reinstate tolls on the I-264 Downtown Tunnel between Portsmouth and Norfolk, VA.


They could, but I don't think they're going to do it. Building a toll lane(s)? I could see that.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on April 03, 2018, 03:07:08 PM
^ Technically, NCDOT could apply tolls to I-540 at the Neuse River Bridge, with the caveat that any toll revenue could only be used to maintain/improve that segment of I-540 (US 401 to Buffaloe Rd, include the river bridge).  This is because current Federal law allows jurisdictions to apply tolls to Interstate bridges and tunnels as long as the revenue is only used to maintain/improve that bridge or tunnel location and immediately adjacent segments of the Interstate in question.  This is how VDOT was able to reinstate tolls on the I-264 Downtown Tunnel between Portsmouth and Norfolk, VA.


They could, but I don't think they're going to do it. Building a toll lane(s)? I could see that.

Yeah, Iím inclined to agree. I canít see tolling that short stretch. Toll lanes are far more likely and I think NCDOT has even floated that idea in recent years. I donít know if itís still on their radar though. :hmm:
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: froggie on April 03, 2018, 09:23:22 PM
I would agree that it's unlikely they would toll the existing stretch.  My point was to show that, under current Federal law, they technically could instate tolls on that segment under the conditions I specified.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: WashuOtaku on April 04, 2018, 06:21:17 AM
I would agree that it's unlikely they would toll the existing stretch.  My point was to show that, under current Federal law, they technically could instate tolls on that segment under the conditions I specified.

NCDOT isn't going to do that.  Nothing is going to happen to I-540 that currently exist.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: The Ghostbuster on April 04, 2018, 04:31:27 PM
Are there construction and completion dates for when the entire 540 beltway will be completed?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on April 04, 2018, 06:11:48 PM
Are there construction and completion dates for when the entire 540 beltway will be completed?
The section from US 401 to I-40/Future I-42 should be under contract by mid 2019, so 2022 is a reasonable guess for completion. The eastern section, from I-40/Future I-42 to US 64/Future I-87, is not scheduled for construction until FY 2027. NCDOT's web site for the project is here:
https://www.ncdot.gov/projects/complete540/
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on June 01, 2018, 10:16:11 PM
I would agree that it's unlikely they would toll the existing stretch.  My point was to show that, under current Federal law, they technically could instate tolls on that segment under the conditions I specified.

I want outerloop to be all named I-640, and tolled part can add a T or "toll" but hate NC540 as a freeway designation.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on June 02, 2018, 06:35:54 PM
I would agree that it's unlikely they would toll the existing stretch.  My point was to show that, under current Federal law, they technically could instate tolls on that segment under the conditions I specified.

I want outerloop to be all named I-640, and tolled part can add a T or "toll" but hate NC540 as a freeway designation.
I think there was an idea in the past that the loop would be renumbered 640 when it was complete; that's why the 640 number hasn't been used elsewhere in NC. But it's not going to happen now, because everyone calls the road 540 and no one sees any reason to change. Except, of course, us geeks here in the Forum who remember how interstate highways are supposed to be numbered.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on June 02, 2018, 07:13:15 PM
Plus, NCDOT got a waiver from FHWA to keep I-540.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Roadsguy on June 02, 2018, 10:47:08 PM
Just pull an MDSHA and sign the rest as I-540, but leaving it officially NC 540. :P
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on June 07, 2018, 04:27:57 PM
NCDOT has received the Record of Decision for Complete 540 from FHWA. This is the final federal approval; it allows NCDOT to proceed immediately with acquiring right of way and preparation of contract documents. NCDOT plans to award three design-build contracts for the project within the next 12-15 months.
https://apps.ncdot.gov/newsreleases/details.aspx?r=15318
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: jcarte29 on June 07, 2018, 10:48:34 PM
That interchange with both I-40 and (Fut) I-42 is gonna be some kind of structural marvel to drive through and around!!
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: WashuOtaku on June 08, 2018, 09:43:33 AM
That interchange with both I-40 and (Fut) I-42 is gonna be some kind of structural marvel to drive through and around!!

Not really. They are simply overlaying the existing infrastructure with a turbine interchange that NC 540 will use; this already exists in North Carolina with I-85 and I-485 near Concord.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on June 08, 2018, 05:04:56 PM
That interchange with both I-40 and (Fut) I-42 is gonna be some kind of structural marvel to drive through and around!!

Not really. They are simply overlaying the existing infrastructure with a turbine interchange that NC 540 will use; this already exists in North Carolina with I-85 and I-485 near Concord.

The interchange is a 5-way junction (I-40 both directions, NC 540 both directions, and I-42/US 70 East). The existing trumpet interchange of I-40 with I-42/US 70 will be retained and overlaid with a complicated cloverstack interchange that includes several flyovers but also includes three loop ramps. Here's the plan:
https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_06.pdf
It's somewhat like a turbine interchange, but not a complete turbine.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on June 08, 2018, 05:19:37 PM
Wait: there's something unusual in the design, a "roundabout" or "U-turn" ramp. If you're driving eastbound on NC 540, there's only one exit opportunity. It puts you on a huge circular ramp that has exits to I-40 East, I-42 East, and I-40 West. If you somehow miss all of those exits, the ramp will carry you to NC 540 westbound, so you'll be headed back the way you came! Does anyone have another example of a ramp like this?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: 1 on June 08, 2018, 05:21:11 PM
Wait: there's something unusual in the design, a "roundabout" or "U-turn" ramp. If you're driving eastbound on NC 540, there's only one exit opportunity. It puts you on a huge circular ramp that has exits to I-40 East, I-42 East, and I-40 West. If you somehow miss all of those exits, the ramp will carry you to NC 540 westbound, so you'll be headed back the way you came! Does anyone have another example of a ramp like this?

MA 213's western end.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on June 26, 2018, 11:15:45 AM
The lawsuit has expanded.

http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article213780889.html (http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article213780889.html)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Beltway on June 26, 2018, 11:26:31 AM
The lawsuit has expanded.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article213780889.html (http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article213780889.html)

"Expensive loop highways around cities that lead to sprawl, increased driving, and contribute to a low quality of life."

Straight out of the 50-year-old Anti-Roads Playbook.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on June 26, 2018, 12:48:25 PM
The lawsuit has expanded.
http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article213780889.html (http://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article213780889.html)

"Expensive loop highways around cities that lead to sprawl, increased driving, and contribute to a low quality of life."

Straight out of the 50-year-old Anti-Roads Playbook.

Yep. That area is gonna sprawl anyway, with or without NC-540. NC-540 may speed up the sprawl, but not building the road isnít gonna stop it. The Triangle is one of the fastest growing metros in the nation. Raleigh is already under consideration for Amazon HQ2 and Apple.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on February 22, 2019, 03:43:28 PM
The SELC has filed a petition objecting to a water quality permit issued by the NC Division of Water Resources.

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article226581274.html (https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article226581274.html)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on February 22, 2019, 04:56:36 PM
The SELC has filed a petition objecting to a water quality permit issued by the NC Division of Water Resources.

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article226581274.html (https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local/article226581274.html)

SMH, they really need to give it up, nothing is going to stop it from being completed and delaying is only make these desperate fools look worse but, we are dealing with people who have some demented view of the world.  Reality is going to hurt them with a 6 lane highway.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: NE2 on February 22, 2019, 06:20:14 PM
Wait: there's something unusual in the design, a "roundabout" or "U-turn" ramp. If you're driving eastbound on NC 540, there's only one exit opportunity. It puts you on a huge circular ramp that has exits to I-40 East, I-42 East, and I-40 West. If you somehow miss all of those exits, the ramp will carry you to NC 540 westbound, so you'll be headed back the way you came! Does anyone have another example of a ramp like this?
New Jersey Turnpike exit 10.

PS: sprawl is fake news.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Mileage Mike on February 26, 2019, 03:26:34 PM
That interchange with both I-40 and (Fut) I-42 is gonna be some kind of structural marvel to drive through and around!!

Not really. They are simply overlaying the existing infrastructure with a turbine interchange that NC 540 will use; this already exists in North Carolina with I-85 and I-485 near Concord.

The interchange is a 5-way junction (I-40 both directions, NC 540 both directions, and I-42/US 70 East). The existing trumpet interchange of I-40 with I-42/US 70 will be retained and overlaid with a complicated cloverstack interchange that includes several flyovers but also includes three loop ramps. Here's the plan:
https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_06.pdf
It's somewhat like a turbine interchange, but not a complete turbine.

That definitely looks pretty cool. Iíd drive up to Raleigh and check that out when itís completed and open.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Rothman on February 26, 2019, 03:56:34 PM
I count four loops. :D
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on February 28, 2019, 03:23:37 PM
Another contract has been awarded. One more to go...

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2019/2019-02-28-complete-540-second-contract-awarded.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2019/2019-02-28-complete-540-second-contract-awarded.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on March 17, 2019, 02:47:12 PM
Wonder what nickname the interchange at I-40 / I-42 / NC-540 will receive. It has to be something, that's definitely one unique design.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on March 18, 2019, 01:38:26 PM
Wonder what nickname the interchange at I-40 / I-42 / NC-540 will receive. It has to be something, that's definitely one unique design.

The Tarheel Twister, patent pending, :).
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on March 18, 2019, 04:39:34 PM
Wonder what nickname the interchange at I-40 / I-42 / NC-540 will receive. It has to be something, that's definitely one unique design.

The Tarheel Twister, patent pending, :).
Love it. It will the younger brother to the Mixing Bowl (well, technically not the official "Mixing Bowl") in Northern Virginia with I-95/I-495/I-395.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Chris on August 22, 2019, 01:59:13 PM
News: Environmentalists drop objection to I-540, after NCDOT agrees to concessions (https://www.newsobserver.com/news/traffic/article234254197.html)

The settlement agreement: https://www.ncdot.gov/projects/complete-540/Documents/complete-540-settlement-agreement.pdf
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Roadsguy on August 22, 2019, 02:26:17 PM
Quote from: The headline
Environmentalists drop objection to I-540

Huh, so it was them keeping it NC 540. :bigass:
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Duke87 on August 22, 2019, 05:02:35 PM
I find this outcome fascinating. The groups behind the lawsuit were willing to settle for a bunch of token concessions which... do absolutely nothing to modify the design of the road they filed the lawsuit against.


Though... I suppose it makes sense in a way. Usually, we're used to these types of lawsuits coming from NIMBYs weaponizing environmental review law to do whatever they can to kill a project or at least get it scaled back. In this case, it seems to have been more just a bunch of people concerned more generically over environmental issues who may well have viewed NCDOT agreeing to throw a bunch of money at various things that benefit their cause as a greater victory than stopping the road.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Beltway on August 23, 2019, 10:02:20 PM
I find this outcome fascinating. The groups behind the lawsuit were willing to settle for a bunch of token concessions which... do absolutely nothing to modify the design of the road they filed the lawsuit against.

N.C. has patsy RE/T groups.  There is no way that all these beltways would get past those in other states, with all the fits they would be having about creating "suburban sprawl".
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on August 24, 2019, 07:40:21 AM
I find this outcome fascinating. The groups behind the lawsuit were willing to settle for a bunch of token concessions which... do absolutely nothing to modify the design of the road they filed the lawsuit against.

N.C. has patsy RE/T groups.  There is no way that all these beltways would get past those in other states, with all the fits they would be having about creating "suburban sprawl".

Give it time, those fools from up north and out west are trying to infiltrate here but, they are running into significant obstacles, the people who left before them with the opposite mindsets and, getting beat down every time they try bringing the BS elitist mentality outside of the cities.  They are being concentrated in the new gentrified areas of the city centers so, influence has a hard time seeping out to the 'burbs where assimilated yankees now live.  It'll be an interesting next 10 years.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on August 24, 2019, 04:55:23 PM
Wish there were no tolls and see much I-40 traffic it will divert off...
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on August 24, 2019, 05:38:37 PM
Wish there were no tolls and see much I-40 traffic it will divert off...
Iím sure some traffic would certainly use it as a bypass of I-40, especially during peak hours, even with the tolls.

If there was no congestion, Iíd likely use I-40 thru, but if there was congestion, Iíd use it without question. They accept E-ZPass which makes it easier for someone like me.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on August 24, 2019, 06:49:32 PM
Wish there were no tolls and see much I-40 traffic it will divert off...
Iím sure some traffic would certainly use it as a bypass of I-40, especially during peak hours, even with the tolls.

If there was no congestion, Iíd likely use I-40 thru, but if there was congestion, Iíd use it without question. They accept E-ZPass which makes it easier for someone like me.
If you have E-ZPass (Or Quick pass, whatever it's called) then you are fine. If you don't have it, they have bill by mail which is more expensive but it's fine if there is massive congestion.

you would be using the tolled part of 147 as well.

It would be nice if they add at least one free lane in each direction for 147 and 540. Or activate tolls on certain times of the day.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Beltway on August 24, 2019, 06:54:39 PM
Give it time, those fools from up north and out west are trying to infiltrate here but, they are running into significant obstacles, the people who left before them with the opposite mindsets and, getting beat down every time they try bringing the BS elitist mentality outside of the cities.  They are being concentrated in the new gentrified areas of the city centers so, influence has a hard time seeping out to the 'burbs where assimilated yankees now live.  It'll be an interesting next 10 years.

But isn't N.C. now over 50% of its population that are not native born to that state?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on August 25, 2019, 08:54:36 AM
Give it time, those fools from up north and out west are trying to infiltrate here but, they are running into significant obstacles, the people who left before them with the opposite mindsets and, getting beat down every time they try bringing the BS elitist mentality outside of the cities.  They are being concentrated in the new gentrified areas of the city centers so, influence has a hard time seeping out to the 'burbs where assimilated yankees now live.  It'll be an interesting next 10 years.

But isn't N.C. now over 50% of its population that are not native born to that state?

Remember the people that fled the high taxes and ridiculous regulations got here first and in greater numbers. 
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: jcarte29 on August 31, 2019, 10:06:24 PM
Wish there were no tolls and see much I-40 traffic it will divert off...
Iím sure some traffic would certainly use it as a bypass of I-40, especially during peak hours, even with the tolls.

If there was no congestion, Iíd likely use I-40 thru, but if there was congestion, Iíd use it without question. They accept E-ZPass which makes it easier for someone like me.
If you have E-ZPass (Or Quick pass, whatever it's called) then you are fine. If you don't have it, they have bill by mail which is more expensive but it's fine if there is massive congestion.

you would be using the tolled part of 147 as well.

It would be nice if they add at least one free lane in each direction for 147 and 540. Or activate tolls on certain times of the day.


As someone who does a lot of cross-state travel (and with a NC Quick Pass) I would definitely use the full southern semi-circle as a By-Pass of Raleigh, tolls be damned.

I recently avoided all of RDU/CH by taking US 421 from I-95 all the way to at least Guilford County, and it was an adequate re-direct to get from Wilmington to Winston-Salem in less than 4 hours.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on November 13, 2019, 06:38:14 PM
Groundbreaking today for the Complete 540 project:
https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2019/2019-11-13-complete-540-breaks-ground.aspx

Phase 1 from NC 55 to I-40/42 should be complete by 2023.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on November 13, 2019, 07:15:09 PM
Moving my previous post on the North Carolina thread to here since this forum is directly about it. It's essentially the same thing wdcrft63 posted about -



Complete 540 Project Breaks Ground (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2019/2019-11-13-complete-540-breaks-ground.aspx)

Quote
RALEIGH Ė Representatives from the North Carolina Department of Transportation, Turnpike Authority and surrounding communities gathered Wednesday afternoon to break ground on the Complete 540 project​. Construction will be completed in phases. The first phase will stretch from N.C. 55 Bypass to I-40, and the second will connect I-40 to U.S. 64/264 Bypass (I-87). This project, when complete, will connect the outer loop around the greater Raleigh area and provide a six-lane expressway that improves mobility and reduces congestion.

ďSeeing construction of this critical project begin has been a top priority of so many across the Triangle,Ē said Transportation Secretary Jim Trogdon. ďThis project symbolizes what is achievable when everyone works collaboratively.Ē

Complete 540 will span through seven cities and will stretch 28 miles, extending the Triangle Expressway from N.C. 55 Bypass in Apex to U.S. 64/U.S. 264 (I-87) in Knightdale. The second phase of construction is expected to start in 2029. The estimated cost of the total project is $2.2 billion, which is being financed through toll revenue bonds and a low-interest loan from USDOT.

ďThe Raleigh area is booming and providing communities with more travel options that give families more time doing what matters most, is what this project is about,Ē said J.J. Eden, Executive Director of the Turnpike Authority. ďThe Triangle Expressway is one of the most technologically advanced roadways in our region. When complete, this roadway will be capable of supporting transportation advancements of the future.Ē

Construction is planned to begin in the median of I-40 on Monday, Nov 18. Residents can receive construction updates by following @NCDOT_Triangle on Twitter or visit ncdot.gov.

The first phase could open to traffic as early as 2023.
Once this first phase to I-40 is completed in 2023, I-40 motorists bound to I-95 South and Wilmington originating west of Raleigh and vice versa will have a fully completed 6-lane interstate-grade 70 mph bypass of the congested I-40 inside the beltway. I'd imagine this opening by 2023 will put the underutilized 6-lane segment currently open between NC-55 and NC-147 to good use, as there will likely be an influx of thru traffic on what now mainly serves as a local route.

The entire project (only part of the project - NC-55 to I-40 - is now under construction, the rest will begin by 2029) will cost $2.2 billion, about $78 million per mile, which is above average for most rural freeway projects in North Carolina. The big difference compared to other rural freeways is that this will have 6 lanes as opposed to 4 lanes, and it does include a large complex interchange with I-40 along with significant right of way impacts, so those are likely factors for the increased costs.

The project is funded through toll revenue bonds and a low-interest loan from USDOT, no tax dollars.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Beltway on November 13, 2019, 09:13:15 PM
The entire project (only part of the project - NC-55 to I-40 - is now under construction, the rest will begin by 2029) will cost $2.2 billion, about $78 million per mile, which is above average for most rural freeway projects in North Carolina. The big difference compared to other rural freeways is that this will have 6 lanes as opposed to 4 lanes, and it does include a large complex interchange with I-40 along with significant right of way impacts, so those are likely factors for the increased costs.
Six lanes versus four lanes typically adds 10-15% to the construction costs for a freeway, assuming that the extra lanes are built in a grassed median area.

The right-of-way on that route is generally rural.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on November 13, 2019, 09:36:07 PM
The entire project (only part of the project - NC-55 to I-40 - is now under construction, the rest will begin by 2029) will cost $2.2 billion, about $78 million per mile, which is above average for most rural freeway projects in North Carolina. The big difference compared to other rural freeways is that this will have 6 lanes as opposed to 4 lanes, and it does include a large complex interchange with I-40 along with significant right of way impacts, so those are likely factors for the increased costs.
Six lanes versus four lanes typically adds 10-15% to the construction costs for a freeway, assuming that the extra lanes are built in a grassed median area.

The right-of-way on that route is generally rural.
Generally, rural freeways in North Carolina as of late have been constructed with two 12 foot lanes in each direction divided by a 46 ft median, sometimes with 70 ft being used, such as on the upcoming I-73 Rockingham Bypass. The urban loops being constructed around Greensboro and Winston-Salem utilize the same section, along with the US-64 (I-87) bypass constructed outside Knightdale back in 2006, except have 3 lanes each instead of 2 lanes with the 46 ft median. The previous segment of NC-540 built a few years back had a similar section as the other urban loops and US-64 bypass, except had an 80 ft median. The current project between NC-55, I-40, and I-87 is being constructed with a 70 ft median, so it's slightly wider of a footprint than usual, but I wouldn't expect that to add significant cost.

The project will be affecting 744 properties, with 281 total displacements. The right of way cost estimate is $250 million.

About 70 acres of wetlands and 39 ponds will be impacted, and cross 140 streams, including the Neuse River.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on December 03, 2019, 02:47:45 PM
Construction has begun.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2019/2019-12-02-construction-begins-complete-540.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2019/2019-12-02-construction-begins-complete-540.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on December 03, 2019, 02:48:36 PM
Construction has begun.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2019/2019-12-02-construction-begins-complete-540.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2019/2019-12-02-construction-begins-complete-540.aspx)
I thought it begun two weeks ago


https://www.newsobserver.com/news/traffic/article237290044.html

Was this part of it too?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: orulz on December 04, 2019, 04:08:33 PM
I don't think "complete 540" is going to be effective at reducing traffic on I-40. Uncongested trip times for through drivers will be significantly shorter on I-40, since I-40 is quite a bit shorter. So given that it is a toll road that will cost money to use, through traffic will only use it as a bypass when I-40 is significantly congested - meaning no relief of congestion on I-40.

It *will* provide an effective cutoff route for drivers heading between Pittsboro on US64 or Sanford on US1, and Wilmington on I-40 or Selma/Goldsboro/etc on I-42, but I don't think that will be enough to move the needle on I-40 congestion very much.

Make no mistake. The main purpose of this road is to enable sprawl in southern Wake County.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on December 04, 2019, 04:24:58 PM
I don't think "complete 540" is going to be effective at reducing traffic on I-40. Uncongested trip times for through drivers will be significantly shorter on I-40, since I-40 is quite a bit shorter. So given that it is a toll road that will cost money to use, through traffic will only use it as a bypass when I-40 is significantly congested - meaning no relief of congestion on I-40.

It *will* provide an effective cutoff route for drivers heading between Pittsboro on US64 or Sanford on US1, and Wilmington on I-40 or Selma/Goldsboro/etc on I-42, but I don't think that will be enough to move the needle on I-40 congestion very much.

Make no mistake. The main purpose of this road is to enable sprawl in southern Wake County.
How about they remove tolls on the existing Triangle Expressway and you can see more I-40 drivers using that!!! There will be a BIG difference if they do so.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on December 04, 2019, 05:56:09 PM
through traffic will only use it as a bypass when I-40 is significantly congested - meaning no relief of congestion on I-40.
Thru traffic uses NC-540 to avoid I-40 congestion - therefore you're taking traffic off of I-40 for every vehicle that uses NC-540 as a bypass.

You're entire post contradicts itself.

Uncongested trip times for through drivers will be significantly shorter on I-40, since I-40 is quite a bit shorter.
Disagree. The toll road (NC-147 and NC-540) between either end will be about 34 miles long, I-40 is currently 31 miles.

I-40 is fully posted at 65 mph thruout, which is a 29 minute trip obeying the speed limit. NC-147 and NC-540 are fully posted at 70 mph thruout, which is also a 29 minute trip.

Uncongested times - both will have the exact same travel time. Here's where NC-540 becomes more appealing to drivers though - less traffic overall, more spaced out exit / entry points, a straighter road throughout, maintains 6 lanes (3 each way), a mainly rural highway design and a rural 70 mph speed limit. I'd imagine a lot of drivers would still stick with I-40 though due to no congestion, but that wouldn't be an issue as there's no congestion. There will most likely be at least one vehicle that opts to take NC-540, so there's still -some- traffic removed the highway.

Congested times is a whole different story. Right now, Google Maps estimates 1 hour of travel time between either end of the bypass, which would be a mere 29 minutes on a bypass. Easy decision to use the bypass, and the toll wouldn't be an issue for many as it's fairly reasonable rate. The existing 17 miles is $3.37, so for 34 miles, it'd likely be around $7 for all 34 miles with a NC QuickPass, E-ZPass, SunPass, or PeachPass. Then you get all those benefits I posted above - less traffic overall, more spaced out exit / entry points, a straighter road throughout, maintains 6 lanes (3 each way), a mainly rural highway design and a rural 70 mph speed limit.

If I was a long distance traveler, I'd probably stick with I-40 during times of no congestion, but during peak hours or congestion, I'd easily pay the toll to avoid the city.

Make no mistake. The main purpose of this road is to enable sprawl in southern Wake County.
Part of it, but also as a bypass for I-40 which will be decently utilized, and also to complete the entire beltway around Raleigh.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on December 04, 2019, 06:16:42 PM
through traffic will only use it as a bypass when I-40 is significantly congested - meaning no relief of congestion on I-40.
Thru traffic uses NC-540 to avoid I-40 congestion - therefore you're taking traffic off of I-40 for every vehicle that uses NC-540 as a bypass.

You're entire post contradicts itself.

Uncongested trip times for through drivers will be significantly shorter on I-40, since I-40 is quite a bit shorter.
Disagree. The toll road (NC-147 and NC-540) between either end will be about 34 miles long, I-40 is currently 31 miles.

I-40 is fully posted at 65 mph thruout, which is a 29 minute trip obeying the speed limit. NC-147 and NC-540 are fully posted at 70 mph thruout, which is also a 29 minute trip.

Uncongested times - both will have the exact same travel time. Here's where NC-540 becomes more appealing to drivers though - less traffic overall, more spaced out exit / entry points, a straighter road throughout, maintains 6 lanes (3 each way), a mainly rural highway design and a rural 70 mph speed limit. I'd imagine a lot of drivers would still stick with I-40 though due to no congestion, but that wouldn't be an issue as there's no congestion. There will most likely be at least one vehicle that opts to take NC-540, so there's still -some- traffic removed the highway.

Congested times is a whole different story. Right now, Google Maps estimates 1 hour of travel time between either end of the bypass, which would be a mere 29 minutes on a bypass. Easy decision to use the bypass, and the toll wouldn't be an issue for many as it's fairly reasonable rate. The existing 17 miles is $3.37, so for 34 miles, it'd likely be around $7 for all 34 miles with a NC QuickPass, E-ZPass, SunPass, or PeachPass. Then you get all those benefits I posted above - less traffic overall, more spaced out exit / entry points, a straighter road throughout, maintains 6 lanes (3 each way), a mainly rural highway design and a rural 70 mph speed limit.

If I was a long distance traveler, I'd probably stick with I-40 during times of no congestion, but during peak hours or congestion, I'd easily pay the toll to avoid the city.

Make no mistake. The main purpose of this road is to enable sprawl in southern Wake County.
Part of it, but also as a bypass for I-40 which will be decently utilized, and also to complete the entire beltway around Raleigh.
I-40 is congested a large part of the time, not just at the traditional rush hours, and it is often brought to a halt by accidents. This situation will only get worse as the metropolitan area continues to develop. There is a great need for a bypass.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on December 05, 2019, 01:46:38 PM
through traffic will only use it as a bypass when I-40 is significantly congested - meaning no relief of congestion on I-40.
Thru traffic uses NC-540 to avoid I-40 congestion - therefore you're taking traffic off of I-40 for every vehicle that uses NC-540 as a bypass.

You're entire post contradicts itself.

Uncongested trip times for through drivers will be significantly shorter on I-40, since I-40 is quite a bit shorter.
Disagree. The toll road (NC-147 and NC-540) between either end will be about 34 miles long, I-40 is currently 31 miles.

I-40 is fully posted at 65 mph thruout, which is a 29 minute trip obeying the speed limit. NC-147 and NC-540 are fully posted at 70 mph thruout, which is also a 29 minute trip.

Uncongested times - both will have the exact same travel time. Here's where NC-540 becomes more appealing to drivers though - less traffic overall, more spaced out exit / entry points, a straighter road throughout, maintains 6 lanes (3 each way), a mainly rural highway design and a rural 70 mph speed limit. I'd imagine a lot of drivers would still stick with I-40 though due to no congestion, but that wouldn't be an issue as there's no congestion. There will most likely be at least one vehicle that opts to take NC-540, so there's still -some- traffic removed the highway.

Congested times is a whole different story. Right now, Google Maps estimates 1 hour of travel time between either end of the bypass, which would be a mere 29 minutes on a bypass. Easy decision to use the bypass, and the toll wouldn't be an issue for many as it's fairly reasonable rate. The existing 17 miles is $3.37, so for 34 miles, it'd likely be around $7 for all 34 miles with a NC QuickPass, E-ZPass, SunPass, or PeachPass. Then you get all those benefits I posted above - less traffic overall, more spaced out exit / entry points, a straighter road throughout, maintains 6 lanes (3 each way), a mainly rural highway design and a rural 70 mph speed limit.

If I was a long distance traveler, I'd probably stick with I-40 during times of no congestion, but during peak hours or congestion, I'd easily pay the toll to avoid the city.

Make no mistake. The main purpose of this road is to enable sprawl in southern Wake County.
Part of it, but also as a bypass for I-40 which will be decently utilized, and also to complete the entire beltway around Raleigh.
I-40 is congested a large part of the time, not just at the traditional rush hours, and it is often brought to a halt by accidents. This situation will only get worse as the metropolitan area continues to develop. There is a great need for a bypass.

There are already is a bypass, I-540 is posted as an alternate to I-40 for the construction south of Raleigh in the Garner area.  For those traveling east, OBX and NE NC, I-540 is already the better choice for a bypass.  For those going to southeastern NC beaches and cities, I-40 is the better choice.  The only congestion on I-40 is during the week at normal rush hours or due to severe accident.  Most beach traffic is on the weekends and traffic on 40 through the Triangle on the weekends can be moderate but, nowhere near Atlanta or DC levels and extremely manageable.

NC 540 will only benefit the local traffic and only those willing to pay, the newbies used to tolls from up North or out West and those with no thought of cost.  Despite being a 70 mph and same travel time on 40, the cost will be like wasting a extra gallon of gas, $3.37 just to NC 55 currently and you have to have a transponder or, $5.18 without and, that's 2 gallons of gas here locally.  Add that cost and your time savings are negated.  Especially being that the cost of the tolls will be more than what I listed being that the distance traveled will be longer.

NC 540 will not be a viable bypass for southern and southeastern beach and city traffic, unless it wasn't tolled.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Beltway on December 05, 2019, 02:18:25 PM
There are already is a bypass, I-540 is posted as an alternate to I-40 for the construction south of Raleigh in the Garner area.  For those traveling east, OBX and NE NC, I-540 is already the better choice for a bypass.  For those going to southeastern NC beaches and cities, I-40 is the better choice.  The only congestion on I-40 is during the week at normal rush hours or due to severe accident.  Most beach traffic is on the weekends and traffic on 40 through the Triangle on the weekends can be moderate but, nowhere near Atlanta or DC levels and extremely manageable.
NC 540 will only benefit the local traffic and only those willing to pay, the newbies used to tolls from up North or out West and those with no thought of cost.  Despite being a 70 mph and same travel time on 40, the cost will be like wasting a extra gallon of gas, $3.37 just to NC 55 currently and you have to have a transponder or, $5.18 without and, that's 2 gallons of gas here locally.  Add that cost and your time savings are negated.  Especially being that the cost of the tolls will be more than what I listed being that the distance traveled will be longer.
NC 540 will not be a viable bypass for southern and southeastern beach and city traffic, unless it wasn't tolled.

Are you suggesting that it is a boondoggle and wasteful?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: orulz on December 05, 2019, 02:40:15 PM
I would fully support making I-40 a managed highway: set tolls at congested times that would cause more through traffic to divert to 540. Basically congestion pricing on 40.

I firmly believe that building our way out of congestion is a fool's errand. As places like Atlanta and LA are finding, trying to do so just costs more and more, while the benefits get smaller and smaller.

So, keeping some people off the road by charging tolls when the highway is at capacity is, in my opinion, a public benefit. A highway's throughput goes DOWN as it exceeds capacity, meaning fewer people can actually get where they are going. So, let the people willing to pay for the ability to drive at the peak, do so. Don't set tolls to maximize revenue; set them just high enough to push enough people out of the peak hour in order to manage congestion.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on December 05, 2019, 04:49:51 PM
Despite being a 70 mph and same travel time on 40, the cost will be like wasting a extra gallon of gas, $3.37 just to NC 55 currently and you have to have a transponder or, $5.18 without and, that's 2 gallons of gas here locally.  Add that cost and your time savings are negated.  Especially being that the cost of the tolls will be more than what I listed being that the distance traveled will be longer.
You're scenario strictly assumes during off peak and non congested hours. The whole point of the bypass providing congestion relief and a faster route is primarily focused at during rush hour periods. Right now, Google estimates 1 hour 2 minutes to travel the 31 miles between NC-147 and US-70 / I-42. Compare that to a completed NC-540 which would take a mere 29 minutes even at the height of rush hour. It may cost an additional $7 for the 34 mile trip (via a completed NC-540), but you're saving 30 minutes or greater during times of congestion. That's when the bypass matters the most, and would get good use IMO.

For an example, when I was in Texas traveling between Dallas and San Antonio on I-35, I hit Austin at rush hour on a Friday afternoon. Looking at Google Maps, it estimated it was 30 minutes quicker to take TX-130 and I-10 as opposed to I-35 straight thru. I-35 straight thru is 129 miles whereas the bypass is 144 miles. The bypass is also $19 via toll-by-plate (about the same per mile rate that NC-540 would be with a E-ZPass, NC Quick Pass, PeachPass, or SunPass.) Despite the $19 toll, despite the additional mileage, I opted to take the bypass, drive the extra mileage, pay the toll,and completely avoid the city. Completely worth it IMO, and I was never traveling below 80 mph (speed limits are 80 and 85 mph). Before the bypass was completed about a decade ago, that would have been impossible, and I would have had to deal with Austin's horrendous traffic.

I'm not saying the NC-540 bypass will relieve significant congestion on I-40 (no bypass does in a metro that has a large amount of local traffic), nor am I saying further widenings and improvements (like the 8-10 lane widening that's doubling I-40's capacity south of I-87 / I-440) aren't needed, but it provides options for thru traffic during times of congestion to avoid it.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on December 05, 2019, 06:21:22 PM
There are already is a bypass, I-540 is posted as an alternate to I-40 for the construction south of Raleigh in the Garner area.  For those traveling east, OBX and NE NC, I-540 is already the better choice for a bypass.  For those going to southeastern NC beaches and cities, I-40 is the better choice.  The only congestion on I-40 is during the week at normal rush hours or due to severe accident.  Most beach traffic is on the weekends and traffic on 40 through the Triangle on the weekends can be moderate but, nowhere near Atlanta or DC levels and extremely manageable.
NC 540 will only benefit the local traffic and only those willing to pay, the newbies used to tolls from up North or out West and those with no thought of cost.  Despite being a 70 mph and same travel time on 40, the cost will be like wasting a extra gallon of gas, $3.37 just to NC 55 currently and you have to have a transponder or, $5.18 without and, that's 2 gallons of gas here locally.  Add that cost and your time savings are negated.  Especially being that the cost of the tolls will be more than what I listed being that the distance traveled will be longer.
NC 540 will not be a viable bypass for southern and southeastern beach and city traffic, unless it wasn't tolled.
On its project page for the current widening of I-40 southeast of Raleigh, NCDOT is projecting that I-40 traffic will increase 65 percent by 2040. If we're smart, we build roads with future congestion in mind.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on December 05, 2019, 06:23:22 PM
If the northern portion of I-540 is any indication, NC-540 may have to be further expanded to 8-lanes in the future. I-540 is currently in need of that now, despite only being built in the last 15-20 years.

It was a smart and proactive decision of NCDOT to do a full build out with the I-40 expansion, widening the segment between I-87 and US-70 Business from 6 to 10 general purpose lanes, and remaining segment from US-70 Business to NC-42 from 4 to 8 general purpose lanes, rather than simply building a new lane each way. With traffic counts at about 110,000 AADT on the future 10 lane section, and 65,000 - 88,000 AADT on the future 8 lane section, it should be adequate for many years to come. If NCDOT predicts an increase of 65% in volume by 2040, that would mean the future 10 lane section would carry roughly 181,500 AADT, and the future 8 lane section carrying roughly 107,250 - 145,200 AADT in 2040. There would likely be some congestion by then, but far less than there would be if it remained 4-6 lanes. Immediately when the project is completed, all of the congestion that exists presently would likely be completely gone.

Now, NCDOT needs to get started with the 6-lane widening of I-40 between Chapel Hill and I-85, and eventually expand the remainder of I-40 down to I-95 to 6-lanes. That segment carries roughly 50,000 AADT. The segment south of there all the way to Wilmington will be adequate for many decades to come as a 4-lane rural interstate highway, only carrying 20,000 - 22,000 AADT.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on December 05, 2019, 08:56:51 PM
and eventually expand the remainder of I-40 down to I-95 to 6-lanes. That segment carries roughly 50,000 AADT. The segment south of there all the way to Wilmington will be adequate for many decades to come as a 4-lane rural interstate highway, only carrying 20,000 - 22,000 AADT.
Thought it was going to be expanded to 8 lanes all the way down.

https://connect.ncdot.gov/projects/planning/FeasibilityStudiesDocuments/Feasibility-Study_1104B_Report_2014.pdf

W/o toll lanes please!!
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on December 06, 2019, 04:34:25 AM
Thought it was going to be expanded to 8 lanes all the way down.

https://connect.ncdot.gov/projects/planning/FeasibilityStudiesDocuments/Feasibility-Study_1104B_Report_2014.pdf
Did not see this study before. 6-lanes IMO is adequate with 50,000 AADT, I donít see the need for 8-lanes beyond NC-42.

The segment from Chapel Hill to I-85 is scheduled to begin in a couple of years (assuming NCDOT has fixed its funding issues), and thatís only 6-lanes, and carries more traffic volumes. That should be a priority for an 8-lane section over the section to I-95.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on December 06, 2019, 07:35:03 AM
Thought it was going to be expanded to 8 lanes all the way down.

https://connect.ncdot.gov/projects/planning/FeasibilityStudiesDocuments/Feasibility-Study_1104B_Report_2014.pdf
Did not see this study before. 6-lanes IMO is adequate with 50,000 AADT, I donít see the need for 8-lanes beyond NC-42.

The segment from Chapel Hill to I-85 is scheduled to begin in a couple of years (assuming NCDOT has fixed its funding issues), and thatís only 6-lanes, and carries more traffic volumes. That should be a priority for an 8-lane section over the section to I-95.
Yeah, but from the durham county line to I-85, they are building bigger bridges so they can possibly add toll lanes in the future.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on December 06, 2019, 11:32:07 AM
There are already is a bypass, I-540 is posted as an alternate to I-40 for the construction south of Raleigh in the Garner area.  For those traveling east, OBX and NE NC, I-540 is already the better choice for a bypass.  For those going to southeastern NC beaches and cities, I-40 is the better choice.  The only congestion on I-40 is during the week at normal rush hours or due to severe accident.  Most beach traffic is on the weekends and traffic on 40 through the Triangle on the weekends can be moderate but, nowhere near Atlanta or DC levels and extremely manageable.
NC 540 will only benefit the local traffic and only those willing to pay, the newbies used to tolls from up North or out West and those with no thought of cost.  Despite being a 70 mph and same travel time on 40, the cost will be like wasting a extra gallon of gas, $3.37 just to NC 55 currently and you have to have a transponder or, $5.18 without and, that's 2 gallons of gas here locally.  Add that cost and your time savings are negated.  Especially being that the cost of the tolls will be more than what I listed being that the distance traveled will be longer.
NC 540 will not be a viable bypass for southern and southeastern beach and city traffic, unless it wasn't tolled.
On its project page for the current widening of I-40 southeast of Raleigh, NCDOT is projecting that I-40 traffic will increase 65 percent by 2040. If we're smart, we build roads with future congestion in mind.

This road was planned over 20 years ago and not as a toll road.  That was it's purpose but, the tolls negate the savings.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on December 06, 2019, 11:43:47 AM
There are already is a bypass, I-540 is posted as an alternate to I-40 for the construction south of Raleigh in the Garner area.  For those traveling east, OBX and NE NC, I-540 is already the better choice for a bypass.  For those going to southeastern NC beaches and cities, I-40 is the better choice.  The only congestion on I-40 is during the week at normal rush hours or due to severe accident.  Most beach traffic is on the weekends and traffic on 40 through the Triangle on the weekends can be moderate but, nowhere near Atlanta or DC levels and extremely manageable.
NC 540 will only benefit the local traffic and only those willing to pay, the newbies used to tolls from up North or out West and those with no thought of cost.  Despite being a 70 mph and same travel time on 40, the cost will be like wasting a extra gallon of gas, $3.37 just to NC 55 currently and you have to have a transponder or, $5.18 without and, that's 2 gallons of gas here locally.  Add that cost and your time savings are negated.  Especially being that the cost of the tolls will be more than what I listed being that the distance traveled will be longer.
NC 540 will not be a viable bypass for southern and southeastern beach and city traffic, unless it wasn't tolled.

Are you suggesting that it is a boondoggle and wasteful?

No, just that NC's Congressional Reps need to get back the Highway funding lost to projects in other states that were ridiculously overrun, the Big Dig for example or, start getting a bigger share for the population changes that have occurred. 

The road was planned to be toll free and that NC had to get tolls to get it built because of other BS projects in the country for population losing areas that can't control their spending or contracting are not getting punished is beyond stupid it's just outright theft.  But, it is expected when BS politicians, Bud Schuster for example, can divert funds for an Interstate to nowhere and PA still isn't losing funding and are blatantly spending money meant for road on budget shortfall not related to roads, gas tax raise for road maintenance going to the State Police?!?!?  NC hasn't even come close to such issues, the Map court case isn't even in the ballpark and they didn't steal marked funds for it.

But, I can rant until the cows come home and those lowlifes in DC will still screw areas in need for their own pet BS projects.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on December 06, 2019, 11:58:41 AM
Despite being a 70 mph and same travel time on 40, the cost will be like wasting a extra gallon of gas, $3.37 just to NC 55 currently and you have to have a transponder or, $5.18 without and, that's 2 gallons of gas here locally.  Add that cost and your time savings are negated.  Especially being that the cost of the tolls will be more than what I listed being that the distance traveled will be longer.
You're scenario strictly assumes during off peak and non congested hours. The whole point of the bypass providing congestion relief and a faster route is primarily focused at during rush hour periods. Right now, Google estimates 1 hour 2 minutes to travel the 31 miles between NC-147 and US-70 / I-42. Compare that to a completed NC-540 which would take a mere 29 minutes even at the height of rush hour. It may cost an additional $7 for the 34 mile trip (via a completed NC-540), but you're saving 30 minutes or greater during times of congestion. That's when the bypass matters the most, and would get good use IMO.

For an example, when I was in Texas traveling between Dallas and San Antonio on I-35, I hit Austin at rush hour on a Friday afternoon. Looking at Google Maps, it estimated it was 30 minutes quicker to take TX-130 and I-10 as opposed to I-35 straight thru. I-35 straight thru is 129 miles whereas the bypass is 144 miles. The bypass is also $19 via toll-by-plate (about the same per mile rate that NC-540 would be with a E-ZPass, NC Quick Pass, PeachPass, or SunPass.) Despite the $19 toll, despite the additional mileage, I opted to take the bypass, drive the extra mileage, pay the toll,and completely avoid the city. Completely worth it IMO, and I was never traveling below 80 mph (speed limits are 80 and 85 mph). Before the bypass was completed about a decade ago, that would have been impossible, and I would have had to deal with Austin's horrendous traffic.

I'm not saying the NC-540 bypass will relieve significant congestion on I-40 (no bypass does in a metro that has a large amount of local traffic), nor am I saying further widenings and improvements (like the 8-10 lane widening that's doubling I-40's capacity south of I-87 / I-440) aren't needed, but it provides options for thru traffic during times of congestion to avoid it.

You missed the point, I-40 has congestion during normal rush hours, outside of those times the travel through the Triangle is at or above posted speeds.  To use the tolled bypass during those times will save the time but, the loss of savings in money will negate the efficiency.  Example, hey, I saved 30 mins but, spent a half a tank's worth of gas to do it!  That logic makes no sense.  Especially for the through traffic that would use it to get to said recreation of Southern and Southeastern beaches. 
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on December 06, 2019, 04:35:56 PM
Example, hey, I saved 30 mins but, spent a half a tank's worth of gas to do it!  That logic makes no sense.  Especially for the through traffic that would use it to get to said recreation of Southern and Southeastern beaches.
Pretty much how any toll road works. You may be shocked to hear this - but people will pay if it means time savings, especially if it's a reasonable rate.

The Monroe Expressway outside of Charlotte for example bypasses 20 miles of arterial stop-and-go US-74, and it's had good usage since it opened. Granted, it's slightly cheaper, but people would still pay regardless. IIRC, Memorial Day weekend had a hike in usage, because all of the beach-bound traffic opted to pay the small toll to avoid the congested arterial road.

Here in Chesapeake, the city built the Chesapeake Expressway back in 2001 parallel to 2-lane Battlefield Blvd. During weekends in the summer, when all of the tourists are traveling between the north and the Outer Banks, the city hikes the toll from $3 to $8 one-way for a 6 mile stretch that saves at most 5-10 minutes from the 2-lane route. But guess what - a majority of the thru traffic still pays the toll. Not something I'd pay, hell I rarely will pay the $3 off-peak toll just because it's a short stretch (at least on NC-540 $3 would get you close to 20 miles) and only saves 1-2 minutes.

The toll road in Hampton Roads I utilize the most is Dominion Blvd. It's $1.16 at all times, and saves at least 5 to 30 minutes over arterial routes, the most notable time savings when traveling between I-64 and VA-165 Cedar Rd. I use it at least 5 times per month, sometimes 10 or more. I've also utilized the I-64 Express Lanes frequently, though it's only tolled during peak hours, and the tolls are generally below $2 for the 7-mile stretch. I'll only pay when the general purpose lanes are congested, but most times when going through the area, it's toll free.

Numerous other examples around the country.

No, just that NC's Congressional Reps need to get back the Highway funding lost to projects in other states that were ridiculously overrun, the Big Dig for example or, start getting a bigger share for the population changes that have occurred. 

The road was planned to be toll free and that NC had to get tolls to get it built because of other BS projects in the country for population losing areas that can't control their spending or contracting are not getting punished is beyond stupid it's just outright theft.  But, it is expected when BS politicians, Bud Schuster for example, can divert funds for an Interstate to nowhere and PA still isn't losing funding and are blatantly spending money meant for road on budget shortfall not related to roads, gas tax raise for road maintenance going to the State Police?!?!?  NC hasn't even come close to such issues, the Map court case isn't even in the ballpark and they didn't steal marked funds for it.

But, I can rant until the cows come home and those lowlifes in DC will still screw areas in need for their own pet BS projects.
I will agree, I do find it strange Winston-Salem, Greensboro, Charlotte, Fayetteville, and Wilmington, all at least $2 billion or more each, all have gotten beltways in the past decade or are under construction all toll free, but Raleigh's southern beltway somehow couldn't get the funding needed. At least northern I-540, the US-64 (I-87) Knightdale Bypass, and the US-70 (I-42) Clayton Bypass got built toll-free back in the early 2000s.

It would be interesting if they could somehow come up with the $2 billion (that's just for the Complete 540 portion, not including the existing 17 mile toll section) needed to pay that highway off and eliminate the tolls. That is a concept I would support, same with the ~$700 million Monroe Expressway, along with converting one of the toll lanes north of Charlotte to a general purpose lane (leaving one HO/T lane each way on the existing 2+2 HO/T section, and eliminating the HO/T lanes completely on the 1+1 section).
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on December 06, 2019, 06:25:02 PM
Good points about the other beltways, but Winston-Salem has had to wait a very long time for its beltway to be built without tolls.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on December 06, 2019, 06:29:21 PM
Good points about the other beltways, but Winston-Salem has had to wait a very long time for its beltway to be built without tolls.
Well, that wait has paid off. Now they're getting a nearly $2 billion 6-lane interstate highway beltway without tolls.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Roadsguy on December 06, 2019, 09:28:54 PM
Good points about the other beltways, but Winston-Salem has had to wait a very long time for its beltway to be built without tolls.
Well, that wait has paid off. Now they're getting a nearly $2 billion 6-lane interstate highway beltway without tolls.

Well, half of one for now. The I-274 half was delayed because of NCDOT's recent funding problems.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on December 06, 2019, 09:42:13 PM
Good points about the other beltways, but Winston-Salem has had to wait a very long time for its beltway to be built without tolls.
Well, that wait has paid off. Now they're getting a nearly $2 billion 6-lane interstate highway beltway without tolls.

Well, half of one for now. The I-274 half was delayed because of NCDOT's recent funding problems.
Which were mainly because of Hurricane Dorian.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on December 06, 2019, 10:33:56 PM
Good points about the other beltways, but Winston-Salem has had to wait a very long time for its beltway to be built without tolls.

Part of the reason for the long wait was litigation.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on December 07, 2019, 09:55:56 AM
Example, hey, I saved 30 mins but, spent a half a tank's worth of gas to do it!  That logic makes no sense.  Especially for the through traffic that would use it to get to said recreation of Southern and Southeastern beaches.
Pretty much how any toll road works. You may be shocked to hear this - but people will pay if it means time savings, especially if it's a reasonable rate.

The Monroe Expressway outside of Charlotte for example bypasses 20 miles of arterial stop-and-go US-74, and it's had good usage since it opened. Granted, it's slightly cheaper, but people would still pay regardless. IIRC, Memorial Day weekend had a hike in usage, because all of the beach-bound traffic opted to pay the small toll to avoid the congested arterial road.

Here in Chesapeake, the city built the Chesapeake Expressway back in 2001 parallel to 2-lane Battlefield Blvd. During weekends in the summer, when all of the tourists are traveling between the north and the Outer Banks, the city hikes the toll from $3 to $8 one-way for a 6 mile stretch that saves at most 5-10 minutes from the 2-lane route. But guess what - a majority of the thru traffic still pays the toll. Not something I'd pay, hell I rarely will pay the $3 off-peak toll just because it's a short stretch (at least on NC-540 $3 would get you close to 20 miles) and only saves 1-2 minutes.

The toll road in Hampton Roads I utilize the most is Dominion Blvd. It's $1.16 at all times, and saves at least 5 to 30 minutes over arterial routes, the most notable time savings when traveling between I-64 and VA-165 Cedar Rd. I use it at least 5 times per month, sometimes 10 or more. I've also utilized the I-64 Express Lanes frequently, though it's only tolled during peak hours, and the tolls are generally below $2 for the 7-mile stretch. I'll only pay when the general purpose lanes are congested, but most times when going through the area, it's toll free.

Numerous other examples around the country.

No, just that NC's Congressional Reps need to get back the Highway funding lost to projects in other states that were ridiculously overrun, the Big Dig for example or, start getting a bigger share for the population changes that have occurred. 

The road was planned to be toll free and that NC had to get tolls to get it built because of other BS projects in the country for population losing areas that can't control their spending or contracting are not getting punished is beyond stupid it's just outright theft.  But, it is expected when BS politicians, Bud Schuster for example, can divert funds for an Interstate to nowhere and PA still isn't losing funding and are blatantly spending money meant for road on budget shortfall not related to roads, gas tax raise for road maintenance going to the State Police?!?!?  NC hasn't even come close to such issues, the Map court case isn't even in the ballpark and they didn't steal marked funds for it.

But, I can rant until the cows come home and those lowlifes in DC will still screw areas in need for their own pet BS projects.
I will agree, I do find it strange Winston-Salem, Greensboro, Charlotte, Fayetteville, and Wilmington, all at least $2 billion or more each, all have gotten beltways in the past decade or are under construction all toll free, but Raleigh's southern beltway somehow couldn't get the funding needed. At least northern I-540, the US-64 (I-87) Knightdale Bypass, and the US-70 (I-42) Clayton Bypass got built toll-free back in the early 2000s.

It would be interesting if they could somehow come up with the $2 billion (that's just for the Complete 540 portion, not including the existing 17 mile toll section) needed to pay that highway off and eliminate the tolls. That is a concept I would support, same with the ~$700 million Monroe Expressway, along with converting one of the toll lanes north of Charlotte to a general purpose lane (leaving one HO/T lane each way on the existing 2+2 HO/T section, and eliminating the HO/T lanes completely on the 1+1 section).

That's it, it won't be reasonable, just ask the truckers who take I-80 in PA to avoid the PA Turnpike to go across the state to get to and from the Northeast, the time doesn't justify the expense.  This argument has been on going in the Triangle since the road was said to be finished with tolls despite half not having tolls.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on December 18, 2019, 04:32:00 PM
Breaking news from WRAL:

"The U.S. Department of Transportation will loan the North Carolina Turnpike Authority up to $501.5 million to help finance construction of the N.C. Highway 540 toll road in southern Wake County, U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said Wednesday."

"This $501.5 million federal investment in transportation infrastructure in the Raleigh region will promote economic growth while enhancing mobility and reducing congestion for area residents and travelers," Chao said in a statement.

"The state will use toll revenue from the highway to repay the loan."

https://www.wral.com/feds-loaning-nc-500m-to-speed-construction-of-nc-540-loop/18841276/
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: ARMOURERERIC on December 18, 2019, 07:19:03 PM
Will this free up any previously taped source of funds to be utilized elsewhere?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on December 19, 2019, 06:29:13 PM
Will this free up any previously taped source of funds to be utilized elsewhere?
No. It's a tollway project. The NC Turnpike Authority was going to borrow money from somewhere; this is just a better loan than they could probably get on the market.
Title: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: mvak36 on December 22, 2019, 08:08:08 AM
Breaking news from WRAL:

"The U.S. Department of Transportation will loan the North Carolina Turnpike Authority up to $501.5 million to help finance construction of the N.C. Highway 540 toll road in southern Wake County, U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said Wednesday."

"This $501.5 million federal investment in transportation infrastructure in the Raleigh region will promote economic growth while enhancing mobility and reducing congestion for area residents and travelers," Chao said in a statement.

"The state will use toll revenue from the highway to repay the loan."

https://www.wral.com/feds-loaning-nc-500m-to-speed-construction-of-nc-540-loop/18841276/
So which part of the NC540 is this loan supposed to fund? Is it one of the parts already under construction? The article didnít really say.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on December 22, 2019, 05:31:23 PM
Breaking news from WRAL:

"The U.S. Department of Transportation will loan the North Carolina Turnpike Authority up to $501.5 million to help finance construction of the N.C. Highway 540 toll road in southern Wake County, U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao said Wednesday."

"This $501.5 million federal investment in transportation infrastructure in the Raleigh region will promote economic growth while enhancing mobility and reducing congestion for area residents and travelers," Chao said in a statement.

"The state will use toll revenue from the highway to repay the loan."

https://www.wral.com/feds-loaning-nc-500m-to-speed-construction-of-nc-540-loop/18841276/
So which part of the NC540 is this loan supposed to fund? Is it one of the parts already under construction? The article didnít really say.
The money's not being granted to sit around for years: it will certainly be used promptly on the southern arc now under construction.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on December 28, 2019, 07:24:03 AM
There will be a toll increase effective Wednesday.

https://www.wral.com/get-ready-to-pay-a-bit-more-to-drive-on-triangle-expressway/18855565/ (https://www.wral.com/get-ready-to-pay-a-bit-more-to-drive-on-triangle-expressway/18855565/)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on December 28, 2019, 07:34:08 AM
There will be a toll increase effective Wednesday.

https://www.wral.com/get-ready-to-pay-a-bit-more-to-drive-on-triangle-expressway/18855565/ (https://www.wral.com/get-ready-to-pay-a-bit-more-to-drive-on-triangle-expressway/18855565/)
So the state is trying to make more money?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on December 28, 2019, 08:24:40 AM
There will be a toll increase effective Wednesday.

https://www.wral.com/get-ready-to-pay-a-bit-more-to-drive-on-triangle-expressway/18855565/ (https://www.wral.com/get-ready-to-pay-a-bit-more-to-drive-on-triangle-expressway/18855565/)
So the state is trying to make more money?
Read the article.

Quote
Toll revenue pays off bonds sold to fund the construction of the highway, as well as fund road maintenance, including repairs, law enforcement, mowing and winter weather preparation and response, officials said. The North Carolina Turnpike Authority Board adopted a schedule of annual toll rate increases for the Triangle Expressway based on the project's financing requirements, officials said.

This is merely an annual toll increase.

Tolls donít ďmake the state moneyĒ. They help to repay bonds used to construct the highway.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on December 28, 2019, 01:07:07 PM
There will be a toll increase effective Wednesday.

https://www.wral.com/get-ready-to-pay-a-bit-more-to-drive-on-triangle-expressway/18855565/ (https://www.wral.com/get-ready-to-pay-a-bit-more-to-drive-on-triangle-expressway/18855565/)
So the state is trying to make more money?
Read the article.

Quote
Toll revenue pays off bonds sold to fund the construction of the highway, as well as fund road maintenance, including repairs, law enforcement, mowing and winter weather preparation and response, officials said. The North Carolina Turnpike Authority Board adopted a schedule of annual toll rate increases for the Triangle Expressway based on the project's financing requirements, officials said.

This is merely an annual toll increase.

Tolls donít ďmake the state moneyĒ. They help to repay bonds used to construct the highway.
So that's really nice when toll revenue pays off bonds sold to fund the construction of the highway, so is that saying like it would help other projects (like the eastern extension) come up quicker? Let's pray it doesn't start in 2027 or 2029. I hope at least 2021 or 2023.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on December 28, 2019, 04:56:40 PM
So that's really nice when toll revenue pays off bonds sold to fund the construction of the highway, so is that saying like it would help other projects (like the eastern extension) come up quicker? Let's pray it doesn't start in 2027 or 2029. I hope at least 2021 or 2023.
The existing NC-540 between NC-55 and I-540 was funded with bonds, and the tolls collected on them are to pay those bonds + interest off.

It has nothing to do with the Complete 540 segment and funding that faster.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on December 28, 2019, 05:07:22 PM
So that's really nice when toll revenue pays off bonds sold to fund the construction of the highway, so is that saying like it would help other projects (like the eastern extension) come up quicker? Let's pray it doesn't start in 2027 or 2029. I hope at least 2021 or 2023.
The existing NC-540 between NC-55 and I-540 was funded with bonds, and the tolls collected on them are to pay those bonds + interest off.

It has nothing to do with the Complete 540 segment and funding that faster.
So it probably basically is probably just to keep the highway new. If you think we need more tolls, where do you think they should go?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on December 28, 2019, 05:11:28 PM
So it probably basically is probably just to keep the highway new.
It's to repay the bonds that were used to fund the highway's construction...

Maintenance and upkeep is factored in the tolls, but it's a very minimal portion of what the revenue collected funds... most of it is to repay those bonds.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on January 03, 2020, 05:03:48 PM
https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/maps/C540_6B_PHM.pdf

If this alternative and an interchange like this would be chosen, then it would have been some exciting news, but since this (lilac) alternative had many impacts and it would run through a water treatment plant, this alternative was dropped.

I'm a big fan of flyover ramps.

The one that they are building right now, I'm not a big fan of but it's alright
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on January 03, 2020, 05:11:45 PM
https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/maps/C540_6B_PHM.pdf

If this alternative and an interchange like this would be chosen, then it would have been some exciting news, but since this (lilac) alternative had many impacts and it would run through a water treatment plant, this alternative was dropped.

I'm a big fan of flyover ramps.

The one that they are building right now, I'm not a big fan of but it's alright
They're not going to build a more expensive and impactful design because it looks cooler.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tjcreasy on January 03, 2020, 08:57:53 PM
NCDOT designs freeway to freeway interchanges as conservatively as possible. The general public doesnít care. They only care when those conservative designs cause unnecessary traffic issues in the future. Correct me if Iím wrong, I believe the US 70 EB ramp to Inner NC 540 will be a loop. This will cause rush hour delays on day one, as N.C. 540 will act as an extension of US 70 (I-42).  I hope that this is addressed.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on January 03, 2020, 09:07:30 PM
NCDOT designs freeway to freeway interchanges as conservatively as possible. The general public doesnít care. They only care when those conservative designs cause unnecessary traffic issues in the future. Correct me if Iím wrong, I believe the US 70 EB ramp to Inner NC 540 will be a loop. This will cause rush hour delays on day one, as N.C. 540 will act as an extension of US 70 (I-42).  I hope that this is addressed.
That loop really should have been a flyover because i'm sure people that go to Wake Tech or work in South Raleigh live in Garner or south Clayton.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tjcreasy on January 03, 2020, 09:12:41 PM
Agreed. Iíd also add RTP traffic as well. There is ample room to add that flyover without stacking it.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on January 03, 2020, 09:29:59 PM
Agreed. Iíd also add RTP traffic as well. There is ample room to add that flyover without stacking it.
Would be nice to make a concept of what the interchange would be like rather than seeing what's being built today? (That's fictional but at least it would help if NCDOT DID screw themselves).
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: X99 on January 16, 2020, 11:01:16 PM
NCDOT designs freeway to freeway interchanges as conservatively as possible. The general public doesnít care. They only care when those conservative designs cause unnecessary traffic issues in the future. Correct me if Iím wrong, I believe the US 70 EB ramp to Inner NC 540 will be a loop. This will cause rush hour delays on day one, as N.C. 540 will act as an extension of US 70 (I-42).  I hope that this is addressed.
The OSM construction and proposal lines show the I-40 East to NC 540 East, NC 540 West to I-42 East, and I-42 West to NC 540 West movements as loop ramps. Of course, the proposal lines also mark NC 540 as continuing straight through the interchange on a continuous mainline.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Roadsguy on January 17, 2020, 07:49:48 AM
NCDOT designs freeway to freeway interchanges as conservatively as possible. The general public doesnít care. They only care when those conservative designs cause unnecessary traffic issues in the future. Correct me if Iím wrong, I believe the US 70 EB ramp to Inner NC 540 will be a loop. This will cause rush hour delays on day one, as N.C. 540 will act as an extension of US 70 (I-42).  I hope that this is addressed.
The OSM construction and proposal lines show the I-40 East to NC 540 East, NC 540 West to I-42 East, and I-42 West to NC 540 West movements as loop ramps. Of course, the proposal lines also mark NC 540 as continuing straight through the interchange on a continuous mainline.

The OSM mapping was based on the public meeting maps (https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_06.pdf) from 2018, which does indeed have those movements as loops and 540 as the mainline. Tucking in a flyover eventually to replace the westbound 70 to westbound 540 loop probably won't be prohibitively difficult (I don't have time to do a quick drawing right now).
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on January 17, 2020, 02:19:50 PM
Update.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-01-17-construction-continues-540.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-01-17-construction-continues-540.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tjcreasy on January 17, 2020, 02:50:34 PM
NCDOT designs freeway to freeway interchanges as conservatively as possible. The general public doesnít care. They only care when those conservative designs cause unnecessary traffic issues in the future. Correct me if Iím wrong, I believe the US 70 EB ramp to Inner NC 540 will be a loop. This will cause rush hour delays on day one, as N.C. 540 will act as an extension of US 70 (I-42).  I hope that this is addressed.
The OSM construction and proposal lines show the I-40 East to NC 540 East, NC 540 West to I-42 East, and I-42 West to NC 540 West movements as loop ramps. Of course, the proposal lines also mark NC 540 as continuing straight through the interchange on a continuous mainline.

The OSM mapping was based on the public meeting maps (https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_06.pdf) from 2018, which does indeed have those movements as loops and 540 as the mainline. Tucking in a flyover eventually to replace the westbound 70 to westbound 540 loop probably won't be prohibitively difficult (I don't have time to do a quick drawing right now).

At the very least US 70wb should have a flyover connect to NC 540wb. Thereís enough space to not have to construct an expensive stack.  I expect  the completion of the I-40 widening project, 540, and NC 42 widening will cause an explosion of growth in Johnston County due to the significant reduction in travel times to major employment centers.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: X99 on January 19, 2020, 08:33:54 PM
NCDOT designs freeway to freeway interchanges as conservatively as possible. The general public doesnít care. They only care when those conservative designs cause unnecessary traffic issues in the future. Correct me if Iím wrong, I believe the US 70 EB ramp to Inner NC 540 will be a loop. This will cause rush hour delays on day one, as N.C. 540 will act as an extension of US 70 (I-42).  I hope that this is addressed.
The OSM construction and proposal lines show the I-40 East to NC 540 East, NC 540 West to I-42 East, and I-42 West to NC 540 West movements as loop ramps. Of course, the proposal lines also mark NC 540 as continuing straight through the interchange on a continuous mainline.

The OSM mapping was based on the public meeting maps (https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_06.pdf) from 2018, which does indeed have those movements as loops and 540 as the mainline. Tucking in a flyover eventually to replace the westbound 70 to westbound 540 loop probably won't be prohibitively difficult (I don't have time to do a quick drawing right now).

At the very least US 70wb should have a flyover connect to NC 540wb. Thereís enough space to not have to construct an expensive stack.  I expect  the completion of the I-40 widening project, 540, and NC 42 widening will cause an explosion of growth in Johnston County due to the significant reduction in travel times to major employment centers.
Or the best option (which would also be the most expensive by a long shot): rebuild the whole thing as a pentagon interchange.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on January 28, 2020, 05:57:01 PM
First Phase Under Way to Finally Complete Raleigh's Triangle Expressway (https://www.constructionequipmentguide.com/first-phase-under-way-to-finally-complete-raleighs-triangle-expressway/47175)
Quote
(https://dmt55mxnkgbz2.cloudfront.net/900x0_s3-47175-S-024_20-EO-1.jpg)
Known as the Complete 540 project (and, secondarily, as both the Southeast Extension and N.C. 540), the new toll road construction will be done in two phases, the first of which broke ground in mid-November.

The first phase of the highway build will run 18 miles east-southeast from N.C. Highway 55 Bypass in Apex, just west of Raleigh, to Interstate 40 south of the city. Hopes are this new six-lane roadway will be open to traffic in 2023.

The final section stretches north-northeast from there to U.S. 64/U.S. 264 (Interstate 87) in Knightdale, due east of Raleigh. This portion of the project, however, will probably not begin construction until at least 2027.

In total, the two-part Southeast Extension will be 28 miles long and is budgeted at $2.2 billion. The project's financing will come through toll revenue bonds and a low-interest loan from the USDOT.

The extension also will connect with the existing 42-mile-long U.S. 540 around the north side of Raleigh to complete the Triangle Expressway (aka 540 Outer Loop).

And on the day the second phase is open to traffic, the circle around Raleigh, as the old spiritual says, will finally "be unbroken." Area residents will undoubtedly sing praises due to the fact the Triangle Expressway has been under construction at various times since 1992.

A Needed Solution for the Triangle

With the steady growth of the Triangle, which includes the cities of Raleigh, Durham and Chapel Hill, as well as several major suburbs and the important Research Triangle Park (RTP), state officials are confident that Complete 540 will provide a definitive answer to the area's often headache-inducing traffic jams. Located in the heart of the loop, RTP is the largest research and development park in the nation and lies adjacent to the eastern end of the Southeast Extension.

Car and truck congestion along the Interstate 440, I-40, N.C. Highway 42, N.C. 55 and Ten Ten Road corridors east-southeast of Raleigh are in dire need of the Complete 540 project to ease their traffic nightmares.

According to Logen Hodges, senior public involvement representative and spokesman of NCDOT's North Carolina Turnpike Authority (NCTA), two primary goals have been established for the Complete 540 project.

"Each are based on general transportation challenges in the Raleigh area and specifically, more localized needs," Hodges explained. "The first purpose is to improve mobility within or through the area during peak travel periods, while the second is to reduce forecasted congestion on the existing roadway network within the project area. The secondary goal, obviously, is to improve the linkage in the regional roadway network by completing the 540 Outer Loop around the greater Raleigh area ó something that has been sought by area planners for more than 40 years."

Hodges added that the state expects construction of the remaining link to benefit local commuters living south and east of Raleigh, as well as motorists making longer trips through the Triangle. The current phase of the Southeast Extension will connect the suburban towns of Apex, Cary, Clayton, Garner, Fuquay-Varina and Holly Springs, along with Raleigh and the RTP.

When both phases are complete ó probably in about 10 years ó the extension will enable a direct connection from I-40 in southwest Durham to I-40 to U.S. 64/U.S. 264 east of Raleigh. The new extended roadway will be a tolled highway with three 12-foot lanes in each direction. Motorists will be able to travel within a 70-mile-per-hour speed limit, at least when traffic allows.

Three Contracts Awarded for First Phase

NCDOT awarded the first of three major contracts to the joint venture consisting of Flatiron Constructors and Branch Civil, with Gannett Fleming as the lead design firm. This part of construction will extend the existing Triangle Expressway eastward for roughly 4.3 miles from the N.C. 55 Bypass east to near Pierce Olive Road.

The second contract further extends the roadway for 4.9 miles from east of Pierce Olive Road to just east of US 401. It is being built by a joint venture between Flatiron Constructors and Branch Civil, with HDR Inc. providing the design.

Road work on another section of the first phase is being performed at a third point by the partnering of Lane Construction Company and Blythe Construction, along with the engineering/design firm WSP. This contract will build on 8.6 miles of the Complete 540 from U.S. 401 east to the five-legged turbine interchange with I-40.

"The contracts will likely involve more than 100 design firms, preconstruction service companies, contractors and subcontractors, with roughly $75 million in work committed to Disadvantaged Business Enterprise firms," Hodges added.

Among a long list of local subcontractors working on the new highway and accompanying bridges and overpasses, Hodges named Bullington Construction, Barnhill Contractors, Mountain Creek Contractors, Colter Electric, Callis Contractors, Traffic Control Devices Inc. and Certified Concrete Construction Inc.

Construction Picking Up Steam

Although the Triangle has so far experienced a largely wet, but warm winter, Hodges said weather would most likely not be a key factor in keeping the Southeast Extension project from getting off schedule over the coming weeks and months.

"We expect some level of challenge on more technical issues, including utilities work, especially petroleum product pipeline relocations, as well as working in Triassic soils and high-water tables in some locations," he explained.

By way of definition, Triassic basins are underlain by sedimentary rocks, mainly sandstone and siltstone that are very clay rich. As a result, the soil formed from these rocks does not readily transmit or soak up water. The eastern edge of Raleigh, as it turns out, is in the Deep River Basin, the state's largest such deposit of this type of soil.

Lots of Heavy Construction Ahead

In December, crews begun the task of clearing land, building median bridge foundations near I-40 and construction entrances along U.S. 401, with much of the same work in January going on at several other planned roadbeds and interchanges. For instance, pile driving for the West Lake Road bridge foundations are under way during daytime hours now through early March.

In total, the first phase of the Complete 540 project will include 49 new bridges and 33 new culverts. There will not be any improvements to existing bridges included in the current project, Hodges noted. Intersecting roadways that will be carried over or under N.C. 540 will be improved to the extent necessary to tie back to existing grades.

"The project does include new service roads and realignment of some roads," Hodges continued. "On the second phase, though, the U.S. 70 Bypass bridges are being replaced to accommodate the new turbine design at Interstate 40."

People and Machines on the Move

As the weeks progress, the contractors on the first phase will begin the assignment of moving over 10 million cu. yds. of earth, along with doing more than 150,000 LF of pile driving. Later, crews will place over 100,000 cu. yds. of concrete on the highway, ramps and bridges along the Complete 540 work area.

Hodges said the earthwork will require a combination of scrapers, articulated off-road trucks and on-road dump trucks. When it's time for the cranes to be brought in, he anticipates a combination of lattice boom crawlers and hydraulic cranes to swing into action along the new route. Each of the machines in use on the job will be a combination of contractor-owned and locally leased/rented equipment, he said.

Several special features are also being built into the road project. According to Hodges, based on life cycle cost analyses and the resultant allowance for competitive bidding of concrete vs. asphalt pavement, the stretch of road from U.S. 401 east to I-40 will consist of concrete pavement while the other two contracts to the west of U.S. 401 to N.C. 55 will be paved with asphalt.

Additionally, there will be a diverging diamond interchange at Holly Springs Road near the western end of the Complete 540 project, as well as the turbine interchange at I-40/NC-540/US-70 Business.

Aesthetic features will be built at points up and down the Southeast Extension, such as noise and retaining walls constructed of real brick, barrier wall and columns on bridges and artful columns for sign structures and toll facilities, the latter of which will incorporate all-electronic tolling.

"Although work will continue to more active this year, we expect 2021 to be the busiest year for construction of the project," Hodges said. "The two projects being performed by the Flatiron-Branch Joint Venture and its subcontractors will have approximately 200 employees on site at that time, with a like number of people in the crews working for the Lane-Blythe Joint Venture and its subcontractors on its own part of the road construction.

"This is in addition to the approximately 65 dedicated inspection, surveying and engineering staff representing NCDOT and NCTA. In all, we anticipate well over 500 employees at peak construction in 2021, including other administrative staff."
See article for additional construction photos.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: 74/171FAN on January 28, 2020, 06:05:18 PM
I-540 referenced as US 540???  I never thought I would see that.

The biggest oddity in the article is the omission of referencing I-87 with US 64 and US 264.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on January 28, 2020, 06:07:55 PM
The biggest oddity in the article is the omission of referencing I-87 with US 64 and US 264.
Interestingly though, it is mentioned in another part of the article.

Quote
The final section stretches north-northeast from there to U.S. 64/U.S. 264 (Interstate 87) in Knightdale, due east of Raleigh.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: X99 on January 28, 2020, 07:09:46 PM
Nothing in the article mentions Future Interstate 42, and also, how can you call a five-way interchange a turbine? How would that work?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on February 08, 2020, 01:58:58 PM
Tucking in a flyover eventually to replace the westbound 70 to westbound 540 loop probably won't be prohibitively difficult (I don't have time to do a quick drawing right now).
https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_06.pdf

(https://www.laneconstruct.com/uploads/application/images/1000/r-2828-nc-540-presentation_111518_final.jpg)
I got this proposal from this (https://www.laneconstruct.com/portfolio/complete-540-r-2828) website.

It demolishes the existing 70 ramps and I think I'm happy with this design. Compared to the first link. Is this alternative being built?

That first one has 4 loops while the bottom one only has 2. The only difference i see is the flyover to the loop is W I-40 to W NC 540.

This alternative is less messy compared to this (https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_06.pdf) one, and I'm sure this is nicer looking. It's more fun IMO too! Idc if they demolish the existing 70 ramps. I think they SHOULD demolish it! There's a sharp curve when coming from I-40 East to US 70 (Future I-42) East!

I think this is what Roadsguy was planning to do when modifying the loop from US 70 West to NC 540 west to a flyover.

Also, when looking at it again, the loop from 70 west to 40 east is also changed to a flyover.

This alternative is a clear winner as it doesn't only impact less wetlands, it also doesn't take up as much space and it's cheaper to construct.

Pretty sure that alternative (bottom one) is going to be built. Because that image is from November 15, 2018 and the top one was from February 22, 2018.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on February 09, 2020, 03:22:47 PM
Can't wait to see the traffic for this, people here have a hard enough time with roundabouts and they're from the Northeast, SMH
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Roadsguy on February 09, 2020, 03:26:18 PM
How far along actually is the project? I tried to get the actual construction plans from a public records request after I had heard that construction began, but they weren't ready yet.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on February 19, 2020, 07:22:58 AM
Looks like NCDOT/NCTA is applying for a federal INFRA grant to speed up construction. The Clayton Town Council passed a resolution supporting the application and sent it to USDOT.

https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/ (https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on February 20, 2020, 09:17:36 PM
Looks like NCDOT/NCTA is applying for a federal INFRA grant to speed up construction. The Clayton Town Council passed a resolution supporting the application and sent it to USDOT.

https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/ (https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/)

It's also kind of confusing if it would be called NC 540 or I-540. That's a little funny in my opinion. How about signing the whole loop I-540 :)

If they want the construction to be sped up, then that would probably get the last (eastern) section accelerated and they will start construction there also!
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on February 21, 2020, 08:02:26 AM
Looks like NCDOT/NCTA is applying for a federal INFRA grant to speed up construction. The Clayton Town Council passed a resolution supporting the application and sent it to USDOT.

https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/ (https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/)

It's also kind of confusing if it would be called NC 540 or I-540. That's a little funny in my opinion. How about signing the whole loop I-540 :)

If they want the construction to be sped up, then that would probably get the last (eastern) section accelerated and they will start construction there also!
Toll roads utilizing federal funding cannot currently be designated as interstate highways. Otherwise, it would be I-540. Until the law changes, thatís why.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on February 21, 2020, 06:34:50 PM
Looks like NCDOT/NCTA is applying for a federal INFRA grant to speed up construction. The Clayton Town Council passed a resolution supporting the application and sent it to USDOT.

https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/ (https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/)

It's also kind of confusing if it would be called NC 540 or I-540. That's a little funny in my opinion. How about signing the whole loop I-540 :)

If they want the construction to be sped up, then that would probably get the last (eastern) section accelerated and they will start construction there also!
Toll roads utilizing federal funding cannot currently be designated as interstate highways. Otherwise, it would be I-540. Until the law changes, thatís why.
In Raleigh the road is often called "Toll 540" or just "540." I don't think anyone cares very much whether it is officially NC 540 or I-540.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on February 21, 2020, 07:48:49 PM
^

Exactly, as long as the number - 540 - is the same throughout, it works.

While the two highways are separate designations officially - northern portion I-540 and southern portion NC-540, the entire loop share one set of mile markers, starting at MM 0 at I-40 on the western side and continuing all the way both I-540 and eventually NC-540 when built around back to MM 69. The existing section of Toll NC-540 reflects this.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on April 15, 2020, 05:33:35 PM
Project update.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-04-15-540-construction-continues.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-04-15-540-construction-continues.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on June 18, 2020, 12:41:52 PM
River Falls Drive is scheduled to permanently close on June 22.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-06-18-river-falls-drive-closure.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-06-18-river-falls-drive-closure.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Roadsguy on July 07, 2020, 07:12:26 PM
I've obtained the construction plans for the three active contracts from NCDOT, and they reveal that the design shown in tolbs17's post from February is in fact the final design:

(https://i.imgur.com/tCaMTiu.png)

And for comparison, the preliminary design:
(https://i.imgur.com/CdTeoO6.png)

It still features the huge loop flyover hybrid roundabout-like thing, but shifted around, and with a few ramps now being direct. Rather than almost completely retaining the existing US 70 trumpet, the new design completely obliterates it and even feeds the westbound US 70 mainline onto the big loop. (US 70 still has two-lane mainline continuity up to the merge and from the split with I-40 as it does now.)

I only have the signage and striping plans since the roadway plans weren't finished yet, but even the plans I do have aren't actually finalized yet and the details are subject to change. Some highlights:

(https://i.imgur.com/BiwF6vq.png)

All three lanes of eastbound NC 540 will be diverted onto the exit, which will ultimately be restriped down to two lanes when the last section of 540 opens. Both directions will be numbered simply Exit 36 with no A/B/C suffixes, I guess since trying to number the mess of exits around the big loop would be a nightmare factoring in US 70's own exit numbering.

(https://i.imgur.com/M5h0VmS.png)
(North is to the left here.)

Each of the three lanes from EB 540 will go to its own ramp: one to I-40/US 70 WB, one to US 70 EB, and one to I-40 EB. NC 540 is still being signed as just "Triangle Expwy" with no control cities or indirectly signed routes, matching newer signage elsewhere. Interestingly, rather than changing I-40 Exit 309 into Exits 309A, -B, and -C, the exits for 540 will be numbered separately as 310A-B, with 309 remaining the number for US 70.

(https://i.imgur.com/6a8Ku2d.png)

This is hard to show with screenshots since the necessary details are spread across several different slices of the plan diagrams, but the ramp from WB 540 to EB 70 (the one connecting from the big flyover loop directly to the US 70 mainline) will be paved, but closed until the last section of 540 opens. While completely useless now, it does seem odd that they're not just opening it right away, since they'll need to sign and stripe it anyway, and will now need to replace signs that they otherwise wouldn't need to.

I also notice that this new design makes it so that both directions of I-40 have one dedicated ramp for each of the three movements to 540 WB, 540 EB, and 70 EB. The big flyover loop is only for movements coming from NC 540 or US 70.

(No mention of future I-42 overlays on any of the signage plans, though this doesn't really matter and would only serve to further clutter the plans.)

The rest of the plans are pretty standard and not particularly noteworthy, aside from the short section of existing 540 between US 1 and NC 55 having its directionality changed from north/south to east/west, which makes sense.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on July 07, 2020, 08:42:56 PM
^

Much like the I-540 East to I-87 North loop ramp further north, it seems like a mistake to make the I-40 West to NC-540 West ramp only a loop. Both of the aforementioned movements warrant 2-lane flyovers.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: orulz on July 08, 2020, 11:04:47 AM
The construction on I-40 in the vicinity of this interchange seems to go on forever. This is a beast. So much so that I think we should nickname it "The Beast" or some such.

The infrastructure nerd in me is hugely impressed by the sheer amount of civil works that is involved here, but I can't help but think we'd be so much better off as a society if we put even 1/100 as much effort into our pedestrian and bike infrastructure.

Instead, the legislature plans to zero out state-level bike/ped funding so we can proceed with things like "the beast". Sigh.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: orulz on July 08, 2020, 11:21:43 AM
There are still some weaves on the flyover roundabout in this design. 70W->540W weaves with both 540W->40E and 540E->40W on the "flyover roundabout". I do not think we should spend the money on this, but building a dedicated connector from 70W->540W would solve both of them.

I also agree that the cloverleaf from 40W->540W is incongruous with the rest of the interchange. Oh well. Again, I think we are already spending way more than enough money on this beast. No need to ratchet up the scope even more.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Henry on July 14, 2020, 10:09:10 AM
Looks like NCDOT/NCTA is applying for a federal INFRA grant to speed up construction. The Clayton Town Council passed a resolution supporting the application and sent it to USDOT.

https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/ (https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/)

It's also kind of confusing if it would be called NC 540 or I-540. That's a little funny in my opinion. How about signing the whole loop I-540 :)

If they want the construction to be sped up, then that would probably get the last (eastern) section accelerated and they will start construction there also!
Toll roads utilizing federal funding cannot currently be designated as interstate highways. Otherwise, it would be I-540. Until the law changes, thatís why.
In Raleigh the road is often called "Toll 540" or just "540." I don't think anyone cares very much whether it is officially NC 540 or I-540.
Maybe so, but this already violates the numbering convention regarding loops. I-540 may only connect to its parent on the western end, but I feel that they should've gone ahead with the I-640/NC 640 plans.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on July 14, 2020, 12:14:46 PM
Looks like NCDOT/NCTA is applying for a federal INFRA grant to speed up construction. The Clayton Town Council passed a resolution supporting the application and sent it to USDOT.

https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/ (https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/)

It's also kind of confusing if it would be called NC 540 or I-540. That's a little funny in my opinion. How about signing the whole loop I-540 :)

If they want the construction to be sped up, then that would probably get the last (eastern) section accelerated and they will start construction there also!
Toll roads utilizing federal funding cannot currently be designated as interstate highways. Otherwise, it would be I-540. Until the law changes, thatís why.
In Raleigh the road is often called "Toll 540" or just "540." I don't think anyone cares very much whether it is officially NC 540 or I-540.
Maybe so, but this already violates the numbering convention regarding loops. I-540 may only connect to its parent on the western end, but I feel that they should've gone ahead with the I-640/NC 640 plans.
I-540 has already been established for nearly 20 years, and it would only cause more unnecessarily confusion to go and re-number it. It would satisfy a few groups of road geeks, but the majority of people could care less if it's 5 vs. 6.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Roadsguy on July 14, 2020, 04:15:08 PM
Looks like NCDOT/NCTA is applying for a federal INFRA grant to speed up construction. The Clayton Town Council passed a resolution supporting the application and sent it to USDOT.

https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/ (https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/)

It's also kind of confusing if it would be called NC 540 or I-540. That's a little funny in my opinion. How about signing the whole loop I-540 :)

If they want the construction to be sped up, then that would probably get the last (eastern) section accelerated and they will start construction there also!
Toll roads utilizing federal funding cannot currently be designated as interstate highways. Otherwise, it would be I-540. Until the law changes, thatís why.
In Raleigh the road is often called "Toll 540" or just "540." I don't think anyone cares very much whether it is officially NC 540 or I-540.
Maybe so, but this already violates the numbering convention regarding loops. I-540 may only connect to its parent on the western end, but I feel that they should've gone ahead with the I-640/NC 640 plans.
I-540 has already been established for nearly 20 years, and it would only cause more unnecessarily confusion to go and re-number it. It would satisfy a few groups of road geeks, but the majority of people could care less if it's 5 vs. 6.

^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on July 14, 2020, 06:54:30 PM
Looks like NCDOT/NCTA is applying for a federal INFRA grant to speed up construction. The Clayton Town Council passed a resolution supporting the application and sent it to USDOT.

https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/ (https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/)

It's also kind of confusing if it would be called NC 540 or I-540. That's a little funny in my opinion. How about signing the whole loop I-540 :)

If they want the construction to be sped up, then that would probably get the last (eastern) section accelerated and they will start construction there also!
Toll roads utilizing federal funding cannot currently be designated as interstate highways. Otherwise, it would be I-540. Until the law changes, thatís why.
In Raleigh the road is often called "Toll 540" or just "540." I don't think anyone cares very much whether it is officially NC 540 or I-540.
Maybe so, but this already violates the numbering convention regarding loops. I-540 may only connect to its parent on the western end, but I feel that they should've gone ahead with the I-640/NC 640 plans.
I-540 has already been established for nearly 20 years, and it would only cause more unnecessarily confusion to go and re-number it. It would satisfy a few groups of road geeks, but the majority of people could care less if it's 5 vs. 6.

^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.
This is not a new conversation. Here is the account from the Raleigh News and Observer's "Road Worrier" Bruce Siceloff back in December 2013:

DOT favored the name I-640 more than 20 years ago when it was preparing to build the loop around our city, starting at I-40 near Research Triangle Park. But the feds were not persuaded back then that the new freeway would ever extend farther across North Raleigh than U.S. 1. So they called it a spur whose three-digit name must start with an odd number.

Now, as noted in Cottoneís comment, itís appropriate to rename the loop I-640. But the state DOT no longer prefers this name. So, as theyíve done with ďconnecting interstatesĒ in Pennsylvania and New York, the feds have agreed to ignore this rule.

When DOT officials requested a waiver from the fedsí renaming requirement, they cited ďpublic expectation, historic controversy, and economic burden of sign replacement.Ē Of course they werenít talking here about road-geek expectation.

Most drivers would find it confusing and wasteful to rename I-540. They would perhaps express their opinions by twerking in the streets, whatever that means.

Read more here: https://www.newsobserver.com/news/traffic/article10288631.html#storylink=cpy

In short: It's the Feds that caused this problem.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Revive 755 on July 14, 2020, 09:36:58 PM
^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.

Considering Illinois is getting an electronic toll only I-490, NCDOT should try for the switch at the next meeting.  If AASHTO won't let them make the switch then seek an congressional override.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on July 14, 2020, 09:42:47 PM
^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.

Considering Illinois is getting an electronic toll only I-490, NCDOT should try for the switch at the next meeting.  If AASHTO won't let them make the switch then seek an congressional override.
Has to due with funding. If federal funding is used, it cannot be an interstate by current law.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on July 15, 2020, 07:18:14 AM
^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.

Considering Illinois is getting an electronic toll only I-490, NCDOT should try for the switch at the next meeting.  If AASHTO won't let them make the switch then seek an congressional override.
Has to due with funding. If federal funding is used, it cannot be an interstate by current law.

I trust you meant the opposite, Federal funding prevents tolling, aka Breezewood, PA.  NC Turnpike won't give up the cash and based on the current State Administration, they are going to steal everything they can now before they are gone.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on July 15, 2020, 10:33:50 AM
^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.

Considering Illinois is getting an electronic toll only I-490, NCDOT should try for the switch at the next meeting.  If AASHTO won't let them make the switch then seek an congressional override.
Has to due with funding. If federal funding is used, it cannot be an interstate by current law.

I trust you meant the opposite, Federal funding prevents tolling, aka Breezewood, PA.  NC Turnpike won't give up the cash and based on the current State Administration, they are going to steal everything they can now before they are gone.
If the project uses any portion of federal funding, itís ineligible for an interstate designation. VA-895 in Richmond wouldíve been able to become I-895, but since it used around $9 million in federal funding for right of way / engineering, it wasnít eligible.

What youíre referencing is with the original interstate system. Federal funding can be used in toll projects, they just cannot carry the blue and red shield.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: hurricanehink on July 24, 2020, 05:11:23 PM
Canít Congress write I-540 into law for the toll portions to get around the law barring interstates from receiving federal funding?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: bob7374 on September 15, 2020, 10:48:18 AM
NCDOT has issued a press release for closings on I-40 at the US 70 Clayton Bypass for installation of the first girders for the NC 540 bridges over the interstate:
https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-09-15-i-40-east-closed-us-70-clayton-bypass-540-girder-installation.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-09-15-i-40-east-closed-us-70-clayton-bypass-540-girder-installation.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: The Ghostbuster on September 15, 2020, 05:22:00 PM
Does that mean future NC 540 will soon be built at that location, or anywhere between Exits 26 and 54?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: 1995hoo on September 21, 2020, 12:02:08 PM
Looks like NCDOT/NCTA is applying for a federal INFRA grant to speed up construction. The Clayton Town Council passed a resolution supporting the application and sent it to USDOT.

https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/ (https://jocoreport.com/clayton-town-council-supports-i-540-funding/)

It's also kind of confusing if it would be called NC 540 or I-540. That's a little funny in my opinion. How about signing the whole loop I-540 :)

If they want the construction to be sped up, then that would probably get the last (eastern) section accelerated and they will start construction there also!
Toll roads utilizing federal funding cannot currently be designated as interstate highways. Otherwise, it would be I-540. Until the law changes, thatís why.
In Raleigh the road is often called "Toll 540" or just "540." I don't think anyone cares very much whether it is officially NC 540 or I-540.
Maybe so, but this already violates the numbering convention regarding loops. I-540 may only connect to its parent on the western end, but I feel that they should've gone ahead with the I-640/NC 640 plans.
I-540 has already been established for nearly 20 years, and it would only cause more unnecessarily confusion to go and re-number it. It would satisfy a few groups of road geeks, but the majority of people could care less if it's 5 vs. 6.

More than 20 years. The first segment, from I-40 to US-70, opened sometime between August 1995 and May 1998 (that was the period I lived in Durham and it opened sometime during those years). Back then the road wasn't very useful because it didn't really go anywhere, so it didn't get much traffic, which meant it was the place to go if you wanted to try to see how fast your car would go.

Edited to add: Wikipedia lists January 21, 1997, as the opening date for that first short segment. I have no reason to question that date as being accurate.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on September 21, 2020, 12:10:00 PM
^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.

Considering Illinois is getting an electronic toll only I-490, NCDOT should try for the switch at the next meeting.  If AASHTO won't let them make the switch then seek an congressional override.
Has to due with funding. If federal funding is used, it cannot be an interstate by current law.

I SUSPECT THAT ONCE IT'S A COMPLETE LOOP, the need for simplicity for one highway entity will result in an effort to give it one interstate name/designation. I-640.

NCDOT has enough pull if they want something to get it approved.

What i don't like is I-87 in NC and another separate I-87 in New York State. Asinine, and confusing.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on September 21, 2020, 12:31:38 PM
I don't think "complete 540" is going to be effective at reducing traffic on I-40. Uncongested trip times for through drivers will be significantly shorter on I-40, since I-40 is quite a bit shorter. So given that it is a toll road that will cost money to use, through traffic will only use it as a bypass when I-40 is significantly congested - meaning no relief of congestion on I-40.

It *will* provide an effective cutoff route for drivers heading between Pittsboro on US64 or Sanford on US1, and Wilmington on I-40 or Selma/Goldsboro/etc on I-42, but I don't think that will be enough to move the needle on I-40 congestion very much.

Make no mistake. The main purpose of this road is to enable sprawl in southern Wake County.

This part of the Outer Loop will be used by the people that have settled in Holly Springs, Apex and Fuquay-Varina.

They came because of the quality of life receiving national attention for over 25 years and counting. This highway will not entice more people to come who weren't already planning to do so. It will provide mobility for Southern Wake County which has exploded in population. It is infrastructure for the tax-paying citizens who fork out plenty of money every month and every year to the county and state.

That's exactly what should be happening and it is.

Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on September 21, 2020, 05:06:01 PM
^ See my previous comment.

I-540 has already been established for nearly 20 years, and it would only cause more unnecessarily confusion to go and re-number it. It would satisfy a few groups of road geeks, but the majority of people could care less if it's 5 vs. 6.

What i don't like is I-87 in NC and another separate I-87 in New York State. Asinine, and confusing.
No different than the separate I-76s, I-84s, I-86s, and I-88s.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wanderer2575 on September 23, 2020, 08:22:14 AM
^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.

Considering Illinois is getting an electronic toll only I-490, NCDOT should try for the switch at the next meeting.  If AASHTO won't let them make the switch then seek an congressional override.

That would set a terrific precedent...  It's not like we would ever end up with something like an I-99 in Pennsylvania because of some politician's whim...
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on September 23, 2020, 10:11:14 AM
^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.

Considering Illinois is getting an electronic toll only I-490, NCDOT should try for the switch at the next meeting.  If AASHTO won't let them make the switch then seek an congressional override.

That would set a terrific precedent...  It's not like we would ever end up with something like an I-99 in Pennsylvania because of some politician's whim...
Again, it's likely due to the fact I-490 does not include federal funding which may be why NC-540 is not designated as an interstate. VA-895 had a similar situation a couple decades ago.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on September 23, 2020, 06:32:19 PM
Lots of folks in the Forum believe that NCDOT wants every freeway in the state to have an interstate designation. I don't see much evidence for that. NCDOT applied for the designations that turned out to be I-42, I-87, and I-587 because they were pushed politically by local governments and business interests. I think NCDOT is perfectly happy with NC 540 designation, just as it was happy to downgrade the Salem Parkway in Winston-Salem from Business 40 to US 421.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on September 23, 2020, 07:11:13 PM
^
The recent additions are logical additions to the system as well, it's not like it's an effort to slap a designation on every freeway segment in the state.

There's a number of freeway mileage that connects to the interstate system and is not designated.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on September 24, 2020, 10:53:22 AM
^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.

Considering Illinois is getting an electronic toll only I-490, NCDOT should try for the switch at the next meeting.  If AASHTO won't let them make the switch then seek an congressional override.

That would set a terrific precedent...  It's not like we would ever end up with something like an I-99 in Pennsylvania because of some politician's whim...


NCDOT did have permission to put tolls on I-95 to help pay for it's overhaul several years ago, but they made it so controversial with several toll points through the state that upset locals.

How simple it would have been to put one $5 toll at the borders with VA and SC. That would avoid tolling NC locals. but no.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on September 24, 2020, 11:26:02 AM
^
They have over 50 miles of 8 lane widening planned to be complete by 2026.

The projects are slowly progressing without tolls, around 25% of the length through the state will be done with these 3 upcoming projects.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on September 24, 2020, 11:46:32 AM
^
They have over 50 miles of 8 lane widening planned to be complete by 2026.

The projects are slowly progressing without tolls, around 25% of the length through the state will be done with these 3 upcoming projects.

Yes, I-95 through NC made a top 25 list for urgent infrastructure needs that was given priority by the Trump administration. Will we be alive to see I-95 finished through the state? It will take 30-50 more years. I-40/I-85 duplex is only 40-60 miles or so and that took almost a decade to complete.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on September 25, 2020, 08:59:12 AM
^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.

Considering Illinois is getting an electronic toll only I-490, NCDOT should try for the switch at the next meeting.  If AASHTO won't let them make the switch then seek an congressional override.

That would set a terrific precedent...  It's not like we would ever end up with something like an I-99 in Pennsylvania because of some politician's whim...


NCDOT did have permission to put tolls on I-95 to help pay for it's overhaul several years ago, but they made it so controversial with several toll points through the state that upset locals.

How simple it would have been to put one $5 toll at the borders with VA and SC. That would avoid tolling NC locals. but no.

The people coming from out of state would bypass by taking 301, they debunked that proposal the first month it was proposed.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on September 25, 2020, 10:27:12 AM
^

I'd rather see the remainder of I-95 widened the same way the first 50 miles are going to soon be proceeding - with traditional funding methods that avoid the use of tolling.

While ideally all of I-95 gets widened to a minimum of 6 lanes, the first 3 projects will address the worst areas, doubling their capacity, and easily achieving free-flow during the most busiest weekends where they're now congested. The other areas carry overall less traffic that's mostly only through traffic (such as Fayetteville Bypass, north of Kenly, and south of Lumberton), that while they will eventually be widened to 6 lanes, are less of an immediate need.

My guess is the next section to be widened will be the Fayetteville Bypass, the last section planned for 8 lanes, then phased out for 6 lane widening on the remaining segments over the next couple / few decades.

Georgia's I-95 6 lane widening took around 20 years to be fully complete, and that was only around 110 miles, as opposed to North Carolina's 180 miles. North Carolina will be completing 50 miles of 8 lane widening in around 6 years, and if continuing the pace for future years (i.e. more segments are funded and designed over the next decade), could have over 100 miles done by mid to late 2030, early 2040, with the rest being complete before 2050.

It won't make much of an impact on the grand scheme of things, but the completion of I-87 between Norfolk and Williamston, the New Bern Bypass, the Carolina Bays Pkwy extension, and widening the remainder of US-17 to 4 lanes throughout the state could result in diversion of 5,000 or more AADT in future decades which could ease slight pressure on I-95 and provide an adequate alternative route for north-south traffic.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on September 25, 2020, 03:55:07 PM
^This. It should have been I-640 from the get-go, and I have no clue what NCDOT was thinking when they applied for I-540 since they must have been planning the full beltway, but at this point they need to just leave it 540 and one day convince AASHTO to let them make it all I-540 when/if tolls go away in however many decades.

Considering Illinois is getting an electronic toll only I-490, NCDOT should try for the switch at the next meeting.  If AASHTO won't let them make the switch then seek an congressional override.

That would set a terrific precedent...  It's not like we would ever end up with something like an I-99 in Pennsylvania because of some politician's whim...


NCDOT did have permission to put tolls on I-95 to help pay for it's overhaul several years ago, but they made it so controversial with several toll points through the state that upset locals.

How simple it would have been to put one $5 toll at the borders with VA and SC. That would avoid tolling NC locals. but no.

The people coming from out of state would bypass by taking 301, they debunked that proposal the first month it was proposed.

Yep, and the small towns along 301 knew it, which is why they were pissed when the tolls were proposed.

Another strike against tolling I-95 is that it runs through some of the poorest areas of the state. Any ENC politician that supports tolls in ENC would be committing political suicide.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: The Ghostbuster on September 25, 2020, 05:48:15 PM
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: I-55 on September 25, 2020, 05:56:32 PM
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?

Along with US-74 in Monroe
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on September 25, 2020, 05:57:33 PM
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
You forgot the US 74 Monroe Expressway. The NC Turnpike Authority's web site has a Potential Projects section but the only items listed are express lane projects on existing expressways (I-77, US 74, I-40).
https://www.ncdot.gov/divisions/turnpike/turnpike-projects/Pages/default.aspx
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on September 25, 2020, 09:33:13 PM
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on September 26, 2020, 04:06:22 PM
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Northern 540 will remain free and the Southern half will stop tolling once the bonds are paid in full. I trust that NC won't break that promise which can erode the public trust for decades after one broken promise .
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on September 26, 2020, 04:07:56 PM
^
Wasn't the original plan for a free beltway? They already "broke that promise" when they made it a toll road.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on September 28, 2020, 10:05:23 AM
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Northern 540 will remain free and the Southern half will stop tolling once the bonds are paid in full. I trust that NC won't break that promise which can erode the public trust for decades after one broken promise .

The government ending a revenue stream!?!?!?!?  LOL!!!  Yeah, that's a good one.  They'll figure out a way to keep that revenue coming and other ways to get it from other road sources.  Unless there is a complete change in government personnel.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: The Ghostbuster on September 28, 2020, 04:39:45 PM
How could I have forgotten about the Bypass US 74 Monroe Bypass Toll Road? I must be getting old!
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on September 28, 2020, 09:51:05 PM
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Northern 540 will remain free and the Southern half will stop tolling once the bonds are paid in full. I trust that NC won't break that promise which can erode the public trust for decades after one broken promise .

The government ending a revenue stream!?!?!?!?  LOL!!!  Yeah, that's a good one.  They'll figure out a way to keep that revenue coming and other ways to get it from other road sources.  Unless there is a complete change in government personnel.
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Northern 540 will remain free and the Southern half will stop tolling once the bonds are paid in full. I trust that NC won't break that promise which can erode the public trust for decades after one broken promise .

The government ending a revenue stream!?!?!?!?  LOL!!!  Yeah, that's a good one.  They'll figure out a way to keep that revenue coming and other ways to get it from other road sources.  Unless there is a complete change in government personnel.

There is no past precident for you to doubt NC keeping its promise unlike other states that have found excuses to prolong which deeply erodes trust that citizens rememeber for decades. NC will follow Virginia's lead when they removed the I-95 tolls through Richmond after that debt was paid. It was a 25 cents at a few locations through Petersburg and Richmond back in the 80s.

NC Turnpike Authority has seized lower interest rates and refinanced 540 more than a couple of times shaving off tens of millions in interest costs.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on September 29, 2020, 07:52:04 AM
There is no past precident for you to doubt NC keeping its promise unlike other states that have found excuses to prolong which deeply erodes trust that citizens rememeber for decades. NC will follow Virginia's lead when they removed the I-95 tolls through Richmond after that debt was paid. It was a 25 cents at a few locations through Petersburg and Richmond back in the 80s.
VDOT also removed tolls on the I-64 HRBT in the 1970s, Downtown / Midtown Tunnels in Norfolk-Portsmouth in the 1980s, and along I-264 / then VA-44 in the 1990s.

However, tolls were recently reinstated on the Downtown and Midtown Tunnels in 2014 to pay for the $2 billion parallel tunnel project on the Midtown Tunnel (no major improvements to the Downtown Tunnel, but that also got tolled), and tolls are still being collected on the Dulles Toll Road despite being paid off years ago. They are being kept to pay for a non-road project, the Silver Line extension to the Dulles Airport.

Not VDOT per se, but the city of Chesapeake has also extended the tolling period on the VA-168 Chesapeake Expressway built in 2001 from around 2032 to at least 2051 to help fund another toll project in the city, the US-17 Dominion Blvd expansion, which began tolling in 2017. The city "merged" operations which helps in paying off Dominion Blvd sooner (2051 as opposed to future years), but requires tolls on the Expressway to remain an additional 20. The $116 million project (VA-168) has already collected close to $200 million in revenue. With growing needs for eventual widening of VA-168 in its northern, toll free section, it's likely these tolls may be extended further to fund such a potential project.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on September 30, 2020, 09:28:45 AM
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Northern 540 will remain free and the Southern half will stop tolling once the bonds are paid in full. I trust that NC won't break that promise which can erode the public trust for decades after one broken promise .

The government ending a revenue stream!?!?!?!?  LOL!!!  Yeah, that's a good one.  They'll figure out a way to keep that revenue coming and other ways to get it from other road sources.  Unless there is a complete change in government personnel.
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Northern 540 will remain free and the Southern half will stop tolling once the bonds are paid in full. I trust that NC won't break that promise which can erode the public trust for decades after one broken promise .

The government ending a revenue stream!?!?!?!?  LOL!!!  Yeah, that's a good one.  They'll figure out a way to keep that revenue coming and other ways to get it from other road sources.  Unless there is a complete change in government personnel.

There is no past precident for you to doubt NC keeping its promise unlike other states that have found excuses to prolong which deeply erodes trust that citizens rememeber for decades. NC will follow Virginia's lead when they removed the I-95 tolls through Richmond after that debt was paid. It was a 25 cents at a few locations through Petersburg and Richmond back in the 80s.

NC Turnpike Authority has seized lower interest rates and refinanced 540 more than a couple of times shaving off tens of millions in interest costs.

Sorry biased here, being a PA native and seeing the PA Turnpike Authority coming up with more and more ways to keep the streams flowing and that once the taste is given to government, they usually go for the whole drink. 

With new tech that makes collecting tolls easier, E-tolling by plate and transponder or tag, getting a new system up and running would not be cost prohibitive as it was when physical toll takers were needed.  This trend has started in NC and I have only seen it morph to other states.  Even the illustrious PA Turnpike Authority is in process of destroying the Toll Takers and their so-called protected Union jobs in the name of revenue.

So, nothing will be surprising at this point.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on October 01, 2020, 03:19:44 AM
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Northern 540 will remain free and the Southern half will stop tolling once the bonds are paid in full. I trust that NC won't break that promise which can erode the public trust for decades after one broken promise .

The government ending a revenue stream!?!?!?!?  LOL!!!  Yeah, that's a good one.  They'll figure out a way to keep that revenue coming and other ways to get it from other road sources.  Unless there is a complete change in government personnel.
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Northern 540 will remain free and the Southern half will stop tolling once the bonds are paid in full. I trust that NC won't break that promise which can erode the public trust for decades after one broken promise .

The government ending a revenue stream!?!?!?!?  LOL!!!  Yeah, that's a good one.  They'll figure out a way to keep that revenue coming and other ways to get it from other road sources.  Unless there is a complete change in government personnel.

There is no past precident for you to doubt NC keeping its promise unlike other states that have found excuses to prolong which deeply erodes trust that citizens rememeber for decades. NC will follow Virginia's lead when they removed the I-95 tolls through Richmond after that debt was paid. It was a 25 cents at a few locations through Petersburg and Richmond back in the 80s.

NC Turnpike Authority has seized lower interest rates and refinanced 540 more than a couple of times shaving off tens of millions in interest costs.

Sorry biased here, being a PA native and seeing the PA Turnpike Authority coming up with more and more ways to keep the streams flowing and that once the taste is given to government, they usually go for the whole drink. 

With new tech that makes collecting tolls easier, E-tolling by plate and transponder or tag, getting a new system up and running would not be cost prohibitive as it was when physical toll takers were needed.  This trend has started in NC and I have only seen it morph to other states.  Even the illustrious PA Turnpike Authority is in process of destroying the Toll Takers and their so-called protected Union jobs in the name of revenue.

So, nothing will be surprising at this point.

NC has a history of being pretty true blue as far as looking out for the citizens. In fact, the underlying theme the state has pursued since its humble early days is to lift all 100 counties out of poverty and bring prosperity for all citizens. Road building is an instrument used heavily although not always successsful.

But Pennsylvania has so much in common with NC, the two states with the highest rural populations, and PA has a buttload of roads which are reaching the end of their service life of the original building and this translates to not enough funding to replace thousands of bridges and maintain tens of thousands of miles of roads, many rural. That has been difficult for Pennsylvania to afford and cold weather  is harder on the infrastructure too, thus exacerbating the problem.

I don't know how long you've been in NC but in my 50 years I've always been proud of the state goverment's prudent spending and there is not corruption entrenched like there is in many other states like Illinois and Georgia.

 has had a few bad government officials over the years but they are the exception not the norm.

NCDOT must know how to squeeze a nickel until the buffaloe poops ( from Golden Girls) to maintain over 80,000 miles of roads in NC for 2/5 of their $6 billion annual budget. 3/5 goes to new construction and improvements.

i bet PA spends twice that much a year and still can't cover everything.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on October 01, 2020, 09:36:52 AM
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Northern 540 will remain free and the Southern half will stop tolling once the bonds are paid in full. I trust that NC won't break that promise which can erode the public trust for decades after one broken promise .

The government ending a revenue stream!?!?!?!?  LOL!!!  Yeah, that's a good one.  They'll figure out a way to keep that revenue coming and other ways to get it from other road sources.  Unless there is a complete change in government personnel.
After the Interstate 540/NC 540 beltway is finally finished, does anyone see the state constructing or converting any additional roads to tollways? Or will 540 and the southern segment of 147 remain the only ones?
US-74 Monroe Expressway is also a toll road.

HO/T lanes along I-77 opened last year, and around 20 miles are currently under construction along I-485.
Northern 540 will remain free and the Southern half will stop tolling once the bonds are paid in full. I trust that NC won't break that promise which can erode the public trust for decades after one broken promise .

The government ending a revenue stream!?!?!?!?  LOL!!!  Yeah, that's a good one.  They'll figure out a way to keep that revenue coming and other ways to get it from other road sources.  Unless there is a complete change in government personnel.

There is no past precident for you to doubt NC keeping its promise unlike other states that have found excuses to prolong which deeply erodes trust that citizens rememeber for decades. NC will follow Virginia's lead when they removed the I-95 tolls through Richmond after that debt was paid. It was a 25 cents at a few locations through Petersburg and Richmond back in the 80s.

NC Turnpike Authority has seized lower interest rates and refinanced 540 more than a couple of times shaving off tens of millions in interest costs.

Sorry biased here, being a PA native and seeing the PA Turnpike Authority coming up with more and more ways to keep the streams flowing and that once the taste is given to government, they usually go for the whole drink. 

With new tech that makes collecting tolls easier, E-tolling by plate and transponder or tag, getting a new system up and running would not be cost prohibitive as it was when physical toll takers were needed.  This trend has started in NC and I have only seen it morph to other states.  Even the illustrious PA Turnpike Authority is in process of destroying the Toll Takers and their so-called protected Union jobs in the name of revenue.

So, nothing will be surprising at this point.

NC has a history of being pretty true blue as far as looking out for the citizens. In fact, the underlying theme the state has pursued since its humble early days is to lift all 100 counties out of poverty and bring prosperity for all citizens. Road building is an instrument used heavily although not always successsful.

But Pennsylvania has so much in common with NC, the two states with the highest rural populations, and PA has a buttload of roads which are reaching the end of their service life of the original building and this translates to not enough funding to replace thousands of bridges and maintain tens of thousands of miles of roads, many rural. That has been difficult for Pennsylvania to afford and cold weather  is harder on the infrastructure too, thus exacerbating the problem.

I don't know how long you've been in NC but in my 50 years I've always been proud of the state goverment's prudent spending and there is not corruption entrenched like there is in many other states like Illinois and Georgia.

 has had a few bad government officials over the years but they are the exception not the norm.

NCDOT must know how to squeeze a nickel until the buffaloe poops ( from Golden Girls) to maintain over 80,000 miles of roads in NC for 2/5 of their $6 billion annual budget. 3/5 goes to new construction and improvements.

i bet PA spends twice that much a year and still can't cover everything.

NC just moved NCDOT and DMV from Raleigh to Rocky Mount, Nash Co. the current Gov's home county and 40+ miles from the capital.  Yes, the previous site was old but, operations should be kept in the capital, not 40+ miles east of it. 

Corruption is well rampant in the 25+ years I've been here and more so now than ever. Hopefully changes are coming soon but, not holding my breath until they happen.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: bob7374 on October 01, 2020, 10:12:32 PM
NCDOT has announced closings along I-40 next week so the girders for the new NC 540 bridge over I-40 West can be installed:
https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-10-01-i-40-west-closure-540-girders.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-10-01-i-40-west-closure-540-girders.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on October 03, 2020, 07:36:00 PM
This was a move that was frequently reported on.

Yes, they try to save money so that more is left for roads, their main focus.

With the offices of the highway divisions not always in the cities, Charlotte division has office in Albemarle, you'd have to list the advantages of staying in Raleigh other than retaining existing employees unwilling to commute.

If a sweet deal on office space in the governor's home district is corruption to you, don't ever move to Georgia or Illinois because it's 100x worse.

I wouldn't want to drive to the old Hardees headquarters everyday but my sister -in law did for many years.

You should be thankful that your tax dollars aren't going towards lavish government buildings like most other states do.

it's a wonder that more corruption isn't ubiquitous among state employees. Because of the large rural population there are a lot of people who work for the state and sheriffs in many rural areas have salaries of like $27K a year in this day and age. That's pretty bad.

Please make sure partisan politics isn't the same for you as true, corruption which to me is about involving financial gains in return for favors. Cooper was accused of approving the gas pipeline in return for something for him. If you have 2 accusations against him, then I suspect you're from the other camp. And in NC these days, The legislators who do what they want not listening to others' arguments in favor of something else is very much corruption maybe without a direct money payout. But moderate compromise is not very evident these days in State government.

But even so they all love the State and are loyal to it regardless of politics, so lawmakers aren't screwing over the state for the purpose of lining their own pockets as it the norm here in Georgia.

Gas is the same price or higher in North Georgia/Allanta than NC and Georgia ain't built a single new road or interstate in the last 40 years. The interstate layout hasn't expanded since it was built in 1960s, A few lanes added to the same simply layout is all thats been done..

So where is that 30 cents a gallon going in Georgia as NC builds countless new freeways and interstates 24/7?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: goobnav on October 05, 2020, 10:55:01 AM
Understood, but, you'll see soon at what has happened here.  It's not the same as it was 20 years ago.

BTW, I voted for Hunt's 4th term.  So, get that thought process out of this discussion.  I judge people by their character at the present time and Cooper has done nothing but pontificate with no substance and the General Assembly has been keeping the control of where the money is spent and that's both sides of the coin.

Granted, as stated previously, they are better than my home state of PA and will grant the leeway to hope for Tolls to be removed in the future, as opposed to up north but, hope gets nowhere until results show.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on October 05, 2020, 06:05:32 PM
Understood, but, you'll see soon at what has happened here.  It's not the same as it was 20 years ago.

BTW, I voted for Hunt's 4th term.  So, get that thought process out of this discussion.  I judge people by their character at the present time and Cooper has done nothing but pontificate with no substance and the General Assembly has been keeping the control of where the money is spent and that's both sides of the coin.

Granted, as stated previously, they are better than my home state of PA and will grant the leeway to hope for Tolls to be removed in the future, as opposed to up north but, hope gets nowhere until results show.

Cooper is a lifelong NC politician and he does sometimes automatically support the extreme stance of the Democratic platform.

He has contended with a lot of disasters though, and I just love that McCrory lost after digging in his heels in his inability to accept the full human condition which includes LBGTQ L,M,N O, P (lol) people of which I am one of.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on December 09, 2020, 07:30:36 PM
Upcoming loop closures at the NC-55 interchange.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-12-09-temporary-loop-closures-on-toll-nc-540.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-12-09-temporary-loop-closures-on-toll-nc-540.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: 74/171FAN on December 10, 2020, 08:04:46 AM
Upcoming loop closures at the NC-55 interchange.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-12-09-temporary-loop-closures-on-toll-nc-540.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-12-09-temporary-loop-closures-on-toll-nc-540.aspx)


It is weird that both NC 55 and NC 55 Bypass are referenced in that article.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on December 14, 2020, 09:28:47 PM
Starting around January 4, there will be closures on Old McCullers Road, which is expected to last about 3 months. Part of Tech Road will also be closed.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-12-14-temporary-closure-complete-540-construction.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-12-14-temporary-closure-complete-540-construction.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on December 19, 2020, 05:24:28 PM
I'm guessing the construction on this project WON'T be sped up cause of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: snowc on February 08, 2021, 11:20:11 AM
(https://storage13.openstreetcam.org/files/photo/2021/1/27/proc/3397525_30025f20a043ad3ceab389fda026ad0e.jpg)
Flyover ramp coming in pretty good over by I40 to NC540 West. When will the girders be installed on this one?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: snowc on February 20, 2021, 01:10:42 PM
I cant seem to find the sign projects for C540. How can I retrieve this?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Roadsguy on February 20, 2021, 09:00:53 PM
I cant seem to find the sign projects for C540. How can I retrieve this?

It's a design-build project, and plans for those don't seem to ever get posted alongside the others. I got the plans through a public record request and can send you them if you'd like.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: snowc on February 21, 2021, 12:09:35 PM
I cant seem to find the sign projects for C540. How can I retrieve this?

It's a design-build project, and plans for those don't seem to ever get posted alongside the others. I got the plans through a public record request and can send you them if you'd like.
Send them on over. I am willing to see them.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on February 21, 2021, 10:06:13 PM
I cant seem to find the sign projects for C540. How can I retrieve this?

It's a design-build project, and plans for those don't seem to ever get posted alongside the others. I got the plans through a public record request and can send you them if you'd like.
Send them on over. I am willing to see them.
I have to agree. On the NCDOT website, they show the old alternatives.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on March 14, 2021, 12:56:54 PM
So, at NC 55, I assume there will be a DDI interchange there? There's not enough space to put a merge lane (unless they add in another bridge that would accodimante the merge lane).

https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_01.pdf

Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Roadsguy on March 14, 2021, 01:30:39 PM
So, at NC 55, I assume there will be a DDI interchange there? There's not enough space to put a merge lane (unless they add in another bridge that would accodimante the merge lane).

https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_01.pdf

There's definitely enough room on the bridge for the merge lane, though neither the existing WB bridge nor the new EB bridge will have full shoulders next to the merge lane, which is unfortunately a common NCDOT practice. See the screenshot from the pavement marking plans:

(https://i.imgur.com/n1KacK3.png)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on March 14, 2021, 02:27:37 PM
So, at NC 55, I assume there will be a DDI interchange there? There's not enough space to put a merge lane (unless they add in another bridge that would accodimante the merge lane).

https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_01.pdf

There's definitely enough room on the bridge for the merge lane, though neither the existing WB bridge nor the new EB bridge will have full shoulders next to the merge lane, which is unfortunately a common NCDOT practice. See the screenshot from the pavement marking plans:

(https://i.imgur.com/n1KacK3.png)
https://www.google.com/maps/@35.6879262,-78.8397816,99m/data=!3m1!1e3

This one shows only 6 lanes can fit.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Roadsguy on March 14, 2021, 10:24:40 PM
So, at NC 55, I assume there will be a DDI interchange there? There's not enough space to put a merge lane (unless they add in another bridge that would accodimante the merge lane).

https://xfer.services.ncdot.gov/PDEA/Web/Complete540/final-eis/design-maps/C540_dphm_01.pdf

There's definitely enough room on the bridge for the merge lane, though neither the existing WB bridge nor the new EB bridge will have full shoulders next to the merge lane, which is unfortunately a common NCDOT practice. See the screenshot from the pavement marking plans:

(https://i.imgur.com/n1KacK3.png)
https://www.google.com/maps/@35.6879262,-78.8397816,99m/data=!3m1!1e3

This one shows only 6 lanes can fit.

Keep in mind that the temporary median is only slightly narrower than a lane, and the eastbound lane is slightly wider than a normal lane at 16' compared to the normal 12'. See below:

(https://i.imgur.com/153eyKZ.png)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on March 17, 2021, 06:49:58 PM
Does anyone know what the ramp built in the median of I-40 Northbound is in Southern Wake?

It looks like it could be a grade-separated exit for left turns or a HOT?HOV exit on I-40 upon completion.

PLease get NCDOT to pick up the trash on I-440 and US401 through Rolesville. I've contacted them multiple times. thx
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on March 17, 2021, 06:56:47 PM
Georgia has many regular travel lanes on metro Atlanta interstates that are only 11' wide and will repeat that on I-285 as it gets rebuilt with express lanes.

I-75 between Atlanta and Macon, one the most important interstates in the country, has several narrow spots with inadequate width for emergency pull-off lane on the right shoulder and no space at all for left median emergencies.

That one foot of width is missing from 2 inner lanes of I-85 in Gwinnett and it makes all the difference between driving comfortably and unpleasant stressful panic.

I cannot believe they are fine with narrower travel lanes.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on March 17, 2021, 07:09:02 PM
Does anyone know what the ramp built in the median of I-40 Northbound is in Southern Wake?

It looks like it could be a grade-separated exit for left turns or a HOT?HOV exit on I-40 upon completion.

PLease get NCDOT to pick up the trash on I-440 and US401 through Rolesville. I've contacted them multiple times. thx
Which ramp? Give me a location.

They never talked about HOT lanes on I-40 on the beltway, nor going south to Wilmington.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: cowboy_wilhelm on March 17, 2021, 09:09:24 PM
Does anyone know what the ramp built in the median of I-40 Northbound is in Southern Wake?

It looks like it could be a grade-separated exit for left turns or a HOT?HOV exit on I-40 upon completion.

PLease get NCDOT to pick up the trash on I-440 and US401 through Rolesville. I've contacted them multiple times. thx
Which ramp? Give me a location.

They never talked about HOT lanes on I-40 on the beltway, nor going south to Wilmington.

Haven't seen it, but it's likely for construction equipment to access the median without interfering with traffic. Several of these were used during the I-85 widening north of Charlotte, and maybe during the I-40 rebuild a few years ago.

https://goo.gl/maps/5YxyWMJ7EN5mYuSD9
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on March 17, 2021, 09:16:58 PM
Does anyone know what the ramp built in the median of I-40 Northbound is in Southern Wake?

It looks like it could be a grade-separated exit for left turns or a HOT?HOV exit on I-40 upon completion.

PLease get NCDOT to pick up the trash on I-440 and US401 through Rolesville. I've contacted them multiple times. thx
Which ramp? Give me a location.

They never talked about HOT lanes on I-40 on the beltway, nor going south to Wilmington.

Haven't seen it, but it's likely for construction equipment to access the median without interfering with traffic. Several of these were used during the I-85 widening north of Charlotte, and maybe during the I-40 rebuild a few years ago.

https://goo.gl/maps/5YxyWMJ7EN5mYuSD9
It's definitely not a HOT lane nor a direct connector. THey use that material to demolish the bridge.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Traffic on March 17, 2021, 10:38:12 PM
It's a haul road for dump trucks and such.  The Contractor 's vehicles use this ramp to access a nearby asphalt plant.   This way the vehicles do not have to worry about constantly trying to blend with the Interstate traffic; it keeps the construction vehicles separate.  It is temporary and will be demolished later in the project.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Dirt Roads on March 17, 2021, 10:48:16 PM
Haven't seen it, but it's likely for construction equipment to access the median without interfering with traffic. Several of these were used during the I-85 widening north of Charlotte, and maybe during the I-40 rebuild a few years ago.

Correct.  On the so-called "Fortify" project, there was a temporary bridge with median access for construction equipment near the NCRR bridge over I-40 in Cary.  I liked the original name for that project: "Crawleigh".
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on March 30, 2021, 04:58:02 PM
It's a haul road for dump trucks and such.  The Contractor 's vehicles use this ramp to access a nearby asphalt plant.   This way the vehicles do not have to worry about constantly trying to blend with the Interstate traffic; it keeps the construction vehicles separate.  It is temporary and will be demolished later in the project.

Thank you for answering that question. I hope all the newcomers apppreciate all the road construction in Wake. Now if we could get all the trash picked up and replacements for the sun-faded Beltline and I-540 overhead signs. Both must be appalling after so much hype given to the area nationally.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on March 31, 2021, 09:28:20 PM
Check this (http://prntscr.com/1114nww) out!

Google Earth has far away imagery from December 2020 finally. Thank God..

A little off topic, but see how the beltways are getting built. Greensboro, Winston-Salem, yes!!
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: The Ghostbuster on April 01, 2021, 11:12:41 AM
Now if only Google Maps could be similarly updated. They always seem to drag their feet on updating their maps' satellite images.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on April 20, 2021, 10:34:25 PM
Now if only Google Maps could be similarly updated. They always seem to drag their feet on updating their maps' satellite images.
And it's from 2016 I believe.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on April 20, 2021, 10:38:05 PM
What kinda bothers me is the Triangle Blvd interchange that has not been extended since 2005. It's still stubs.

http://prntscr.com/11s6r85
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on April 23, 2021, 02:44:43 PM
What kinda bothers me is the Triangle Blvd interchange that has not been extended since 2005. It's still stubs.

http://prntscr.com/11s6r85

Is that missing section badly needed? I think we need more trees and I'd hate to see that little cluster lost to this extension.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on April 23, 2021, 02:54:31 PM
What kinda bothers me is the Triangle Blvd interchange that has not been extended since 2005. It's still stubs.

http://prntscr.com/11s6r85

Is that missing section badly needed? I think we need more trees and I'd hate to see that little cluster lost to this extension.
No, it's for a future extension once they run out of room for development.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on May 20, 2021, 12:38:15 PM
Starting around January 4, there will be closures on Old McCullers Road, which is expected to last about 3 months. Part of Tech Road will also be closed.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-12-14-temporary-closure-complete-540-construction.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2020/2020-12-14-temporary-closure-complete-540-construction.aspx)

Another closure involving Old McCullers Road will begin around May 24.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2021/2021-05-20-closure-complete-540-construction.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2021/2021-05-20-closure-complete-540-construction.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on May 23, 2021, 08:20:28 AM
I hope all of you have seen the drone video and rendering some guy has of this interchange. I found it by searching the highways and interchange names on youtube.

OK here it is:

Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on May 23, 2021, 12:41:02 PM
I hope all of you have seen the drone video and rendering some guy has of this interchange. I found it by searching the highways and interchange names on youtube.

OK here it is:

The interchange configuration has changed since that rendering came out.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on May 23, 2021, 12:43:36 PM
^

I've obtained the construction plans for the three active contracts from NCDOT, and they reveal that the design shown in tolbs17's post from February is in fact the final design:

(https://i.imgur.com/tCaMTiu.png)

And for comparison, the preliminary design:
(https://i.imgur.com/CdTeoO6.png)

It still features the huge loop flyover hybrid roundabout-like thing, but shifted around, and with a few ramps now being direct. Rather than almost completely retaining the existing US 70 trumpet, the new design completely obliterates it and even feeds the westbound US 70 mainline onto the big loop. (US 70 still has two-lane mainline continuity up to the merge and from the split with I-40 as it does now.)

I only have the signage and striping plans since the roadway plans weren't finished yet, but even the plans I do have aren't actually finalized yet and the details are subject to change. Some highlights:

(https://i.imgur.com/BiwF6vq.png)

All three lanes of eastbound NC 540 will be diverted onto the exit, which will ultimately be restriped down to two lanes when the last section of 540 opens. Both directions will be numbered simply Exit 36 with no A/B/C suffixes, I guess since trying to number the mess of exits around the big loop would be a nightmare factoring in US 70's own exit numbering.

(https://i.imgur.com/M5h0VmS.png)
(North is to the left here.)

Each of the three lanes from EB 540 will go to its own ramp: one to I-40/US 70 WB, one to US 70 EB, and one to I-40 EB. NC 540 is still being signed as just "Triangle Expwy" with no control cities or indirectly signed routes, matching newer signage elsewhere. Interestingly, rather than changing I-40 Exit 309 into Exits 309A, -B, and -C, the exits for 540 will be numbered separately as 310A-B, with 309 remaining the number for US 70.

(https://i.imgur.com/6a8Ku2d.png)

This is hard to show with screenshots since the necessary details are spread across several different slices of the plan diagrams, but the ramp from WB 540 to EB 70 (the one connecting from the big flyover loop directly to the US 70 mainline) will be paved, but closed until the last section of 540 opens. While completely useless now, it does seem odd that they're not just opening it right away, since they'll need to sign and stripe it anyway, and will now need to replace signs that they otherwise wouldn't need to.

I also notice that this new design makes it so that both directions of I-40 have one dedicated ramp for each of the three movements to 540 WB, 540 EB, and 70 EB. The big flyover loop is only for movements coming from NC 540 or US 70.

(No mention of future I-42 overlays on any of the signage plans, though this doesn't really matter and would only serve to further clutter the plans.)

The rest of the plans are pretty standard and not particularly noteworthy, aside from the short section of existing 540 between US 1 and NC 55 having its directionality changed from north/south to east/west, which makes sense.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: The Ghostbuster on May 24, 2021, 03:42:52 PM
Wikipedia says the segment of NC 540 between NC 55 and Interstate 40 will be completed by approximately 2023, and the segment between Interstate 40 and Interstate 87 will be completed by approximately 2033: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Interstate_540_and_North_Carolina_Highway_540. Does this sound accurate?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: fillup420 on May 24, 2021, 05:05:10 PM
I'm interested to see if the mile markers end up aligning, and where they would put the gap if they don't
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on May 25, 2021, 06:06:12 PM
the existing bridges are in great condition. Now they are being replaced.....
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on June 18, 2021, 08:25:49 PM
Any some good interchange ideas for NC-540, I-87 (Knightdale bypass) to I-540? Other than a 3 level stack? Maybe braided ramps can be used at Poole Rd. Just my suggestions.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: bob7374 on June 18, 2021, 09:16:12 PM
I'm interested to see if the mile markers end up aligning, and where they would put the gap if they don't
Hopefully they will, but remember that they had problems with the mileage when they first opened NC 540. The original exit numbers between US 64 and NC 54 were about 15 miles less than they should have been. You would hope they wouldn't forget about a section of unbuilt road again.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: wdcrft63 on June 21, 2021, 06:23:41 PM
I'm interested to see if the mile markers end up aligning, and where they would put the gap if they don't
NCDOT obviously intends to count mileage clockwise all the way around the beltway. On NC 540 the first exit south of I-40 (NC 54) is Exit 69.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: fillup420 on June 21, 2021, 09:30:41 PM
I'm interested to see if the mile markers end up aligning, and where they would put the gap if they don't
NCDOT obviously intends to count mileage clockwise all the way around the beltway. On NC 540 the first exit south of I-40 (NC 54) is Exit 69.

yes, thats my point.

Mile markers begin going north/east at I-40, currently end at 26 (US 64). Mileage picks back up on the south end of the loop at 54 (NC 55). I am interested to see how close they get to the projected 28 miles of roadway in the actual build. If the alignment has changed at all, there will need to be a slight gap in the exit numbers, or the some/all exits will need to be renumbered. I think i know which is easier..
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on July 24, 2021, 04:12:14 PM
Here's an updated video

Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on August 02, 2021, 03:51:55 PM
Beginning around August 16, Johnson Pond Road between Ten Ten Road and Optimist Farm Road will be closed for approximately 5 months.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2021/2021-08-02-c540-construction-closure.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2021/2021-08-02-c540-construction-closure.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: Plutonic Panda on August 10, 2021, 03:54:29 PM
Great news for this project:

Quote
WASHINGTON Ė U.S. Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg today announced that the U.S. Department of Transportationís Build America Bureau (the Bureau) has provided
up to $499.5 million to the North Carolina Turnpike Authority (NCTA) for the Complete 540 Phase 1 Project (the Project). The Department provides Transportation Infrastructure Finance and Innovation Act (TIFIA) and other surface transportation infrastructure financing through the Bureau.

As part of COVID-19 relief to borrowers, this loan will replace the current TIFIA loan that the Bureau provided to NCTA for the Project in December 2019. The lower interest rate on the new loan will provide NCTA significant interest cost savings. The loan proceeds will finance part of the construction of the Project, which consists of a 17.1-mile six-lane extension of the existing Triangle Expressway Toll road.

It is the first phase of a larger project to complete the 540 Outer Loop around greater Raleigh area. Once the Loop is fully complete, it will improve mobility for trips and reduce forecasted congestion on the existing roadway network in the Project area with substantial reduction in travel times. It will also provide more route choices for those who live, work or travel though the area.

Procurement of the Project was split into small segments to provide additional participation opportunities for local design and construction industry, and for contractors of various sizes and resources, including disadvantaged business enterprises (DBE) to participate. Approximately $80 million in work is to be provided by DBE. Project construction is already underway and is on budget. NCTA expects to open the Project by July 2023.

- https://www.transportation.gov/briefing-room/us-department-transportation-announces-4995-million-loan-north-carolina-turnpike
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on September 10, 2021, 02:09:53 PM
Closures on NC-55 Bypass next week.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2021/2021-09-10-temporary-closure-nc-55-540-construction.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2021/2021-09-10-temporary-closure-nc-55-540-construction.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on October 16, 2021, 04:16:17 AM
Isn't it funny that the New Bethel Church Road overpass is being replaced for the third time?! LOL!!  :-D :-D :-D

It was first built in 1988, then replaced in 2007, and now it's being replaced again in 2021!!
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: NJRoadfan on December 31, 2021, 08:27:51 PM
For any locals that want a good view of NC-540 construction, take a ride over to the Fanny Brown Rd. overpass. It has a really good vantage point in both directions. Also drove past the future Holly Springs Rd. interchange. The area is unrecognizable with the clear cutting of all the trees. Don't know how well a diverging diamond is going to work here given the thru traffic volumes on Holly Springs Rd. and the relocated Kildaire Farm Rd. intersection being just to the north.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: sprjus4 on December 31, 2021, 08:49:46 PM
For any locals that want a good view of NC-540 construction, take a ride over to the Fanny Brown Rd. overpass. It has a really good vantage point in both directions. Also drove past the future Holly Springs Rd. interchange. The area is unrecognizable with the clear cutting of all the trees. Don't know how well a diverging diamond is going to work here given the thru traffic volumes on Holly Springs Rd. and the relocated Kildaire Farm Rd. intersection being just to the north.
Any pictures?
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on January 01, 2022, 12:44:28 PM
For any locals that want a good view of NC-540 construction, take a ride over to the Fanny Brown Rd. overpass. It has a really good vantage point in both directions. Also drove past the future Holly Springs Rd. interchange. The area is unrecognizable with the clear cutting of all the trees. Don't know how well a diverging diamond is going to work here given the thru traffic volumes on Holly Springs Rd. and the relocated Kildaire Farm Rd. intersection being just to the north.
Do not live in that area but I can imagine how far it has came when looking at this (https://livingatlas2.arcgis.com/sentinel2explorer/).

http://prntscr.com/25lizzj

Red is phase 1 movements guessed by me.

Blue is phase 2 movements.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on January 11, 2022, 06:24:02 PM
Does anybody have a link that shows the signage plans of the southern extension of 540?

Btw, as seen in Q&A 13, this section will be paved with asphalt and not concrete.

https://www.ncdot.gov/projects/complete-540/Documents/complete-540-woodcreek-q&a.pdf
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on February 06, 2022, 03:50:26 PM
Definitely coming along nicely....

Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: architect77 on February 06, 2022, 05:52:44 PM
Thanks for posting the above links. Very interesting.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: tolbs17 on February 06, 2022, 09:17:28 PM
Thanks for posting the above links. Very interesting.
Yw.

Now I just wonder what's gonna happen with all the traffic coming from I-40 east wanting to jump on US-70 east. I feel like a full closure will probably be needed and a lot of traffic uses that ramp.
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: LM117 on April 28, 2022, 11:20:05 AM
Closures on Holly Springs Road and Kildaire Farm Road this weekend.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2022/2022-04-closure-holly-springs-road-and-kildaire-farm-road.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2022/2022-04-closure-holly-springs-road-and-kildaire-farm-road.aspx)
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: snowc on April 28, 2022, 11:58:13 AM
Closures on Holly Springs Road and Kildaire Farm Road this weekend.

https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2022/2022-04-closure-holly-springs-road-and-kildaire-farm-road.aspx (https://www.ncdot.gov/news/press-releases/Pages/2022/2022-04-closure-holly-springs-road-and-kildaire-farm-road.aspx)
Its about time! NC 540's comin along nice!
That means that the girders will be installed, right, on Exit 50, or have they already?  :hmmm:
Title: Re: Complete NC 540 Project
Post by: cowboy_wilhelm on May 04, 2022, 08:29:56 PM
Here are some mediocre photos of the interchange going eastbound from I-40 to US-70.

(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52050920653_93ec32dd4f_b.jpg) (https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52050920653_c3b6fa600a_o.jpg)
(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52051123734_5b9c9a9189_b.jpg) (https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52051123734_4541272a63_o.jpg)
(https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52051123724_324574b736_b.jpg) (https://live.staticflickr.com/65535/52051123724_8144093f40_o.jpg)